Why United may have to miss out on Hummels to sign Vermaelen

Manchester United could sign Thomas Vermaelen should Arsenal trump them in the race for Mats Hummels.

Manchester United could shortly be a step closer to signing Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen.

However, the arrival of the Belgian could come at a big cost to United with Arsenal being tipped to make a move for one of their main transfer targets of the summer; Borussia Dortmund’s Mats Hummels.

Reports broke out over the weekend suggesting that Arsenal could move for the £20 million rated German, who would represent the extra player Arsene Wenger would need before granting Vermaelen an exit.

Vermaelen is arguably a better option for United in some respects as he has that level of Premier League experience and would be moving with a point to prove following a frustrating recent spell at the Gunners.

Wenger has always maintained that he won’t let key players leave his club unless he has replacements in place and Vermaelen’s future appears to depend on that very line of thinking.

This looks like a cast iron case of a club having to wait for another transfer to go through (Vermaelen’s replacement) before realistically going after a move and being able to do business.

The Mirror claims that Arsene Wenger has asked to be informed about the availability of Hummels, who has been tipped to replace Seb Kehl as Dortmund’s captain ahead of the new Bundesliga season.

However, their chances of realistically being able to sign the German are difficult to gauge.

Should Hummels take the captaincy before next season, it’s a clear sign that he’s not going anywhere because it’s not a decision he would take if he was thinking of leaving the club before the end of the transfer window.

If the captaincy decision at BVB is delayed, it gives Arsenal a little room to breathe as they try and pull off a deal although United cannot be overlooked as they can still make bids of their own.

If Arsenal sign Hummels or any other player, it makes Vermaelen to United much more realistic.

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch