Manchester United has announced that they and Ajax have agreed on a price for Brazilian attacker Antony.
Prior to his £81.3 million move, which would cost £85.5 million with contract-related add-ons, Antony had a medical. The 22-year-old joins Tyrell Malacia, Christian Eriksen, Lisandro Martinez, and Casemiro as United's fifth additions under the Erik ten Hag era.
"Manchester United has reached agreement with Ajax for the transfer of Antony, subject to medical, to player terms being settled, and international clearance," read a statement from the club.
Antony, who played under Erik ten Hag for two years in Amsterdam, has been desperate to be reunited with the Dutchman at Old Trafford. Ajax were reluctant to sell their star player after losing so many other players this summer, including Lisandro Martinez to United, but eventually agreed to sell for a huge fee.
The 22-year-old Brazilian went on strike to force through the transfer, which sees him become United’s second most expensive player of all time, behind only Paul Pogba, who cost £89m from Juventus in 2016. However, Antony has become the most profitable sale of all time by a Dutch club, topping Frenkie de Jong’s move from Ajax to Barcelona in 2019.
United sources say Antony was a “priority” signing for Erik ten Hag, his former player, whom he has wanted all summer. The club see him as a “significant” addition to United’s forward line, his technical ability and winning mentality viewed as being typical of the players Ten Hag has brought in this summer.
After multiple departures, including Paul Pogba, Juan Mata, Nemanja Matic, Jesse Lingard and Edinson Cavani, United have sought to rebuild the squad with Antony the latest arrival. The Brazilian, who flew to England on Monday to complete a medical, is United’s fifth signing of the summer transfer window ahead of the deadline, at 11pm on Thursday.
He joins after contributing 24 goals and 22 assists in 82 appearances for Ajax. He was brought to Amsterdam by Ten Hag, who signed off on a July 2020 transfer from Sao Paulo which was worth an initial fee of £13m, that could have grown to £18.2m through
The young winger arrived as a replacement for Hakim Ziyech, who had agreed to join Chelsea in a £33m deal in February 2020. Antony’s performances saw him muscle out David Neres from Ten Hag’s side and become a regular for Ajax.
Antony told Ajax he wanted to leave back in February, but it has taken until the end of the summer window for the transfer to go through. “During the window months, meetings continued and I also received a proposal from Ajax for contract renewal. I made it clear once again: I want to leave,” he told Fabrizio Romano last week.
“I was very happy in Amsterdam, I won titles at Ajax, made friends and built part of my career, but now I reinforce that I am ready and full of motivation to follow my story and my dreams. People need to listen to me and understand that my motivation moves me towards happiness.”