Huge upcoming Spurs fixture causes Man Utd to reach 'crazy' agreement with vital £47m star

Erik ten Hag can't afford to drop points when Spurs visit Man Utd this month (Image: Getty Images)Erik ten Hag can't afford to drop points when Spurs visit Man Utd this month (Image: Getty Images)
Erik ten Hag can't afford to drop points when Spurs visit Man Utd this month (Image: Getty Images) | Getty Images
Premier League sides are bidding a brief farewell to AFCON and Asian Cup stars this week but Man Utd have struck a special deal with Andre Onana ahead of a meeting with Spurs.

Manchester United have reached a special agreement with goalkeeper Andre Onana to ensure their number one shot-stopper can play in the Premier League crunch match with Spurs later this month.

The two sides meet at Old Trafford on Sunday, January 14 with the Red Devils desperate to close the six-point gap that has opened up between themselves and Ange Postecoglou's side. Right now, the London outfit look much more likely candidates to challenge for a Champions League place but there is still an expectation that Manchester United rival the top four despite an inconsistent start to the season.

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Spurs turned in a convincing performance to beat Erik ten Hag's side 2-0 when they last met in the league in August and United will be aware that another dropped three points against their rivals would make the challenge of a European football place even greater. As such, it appears the club has gone to great lengths to ensure goalkeeper Onana will be in between the sticks for the match.

Premier League sides will be without a number of key stars in the coming weeks due to the Africa Cup of Nations and the Asian Cup with Cameroon international Onana one of those set for international duty. His national side kicks off their AFCON campaign on Monday, January 15 against Guinea at 5 pm GMT.

That Cameroon curtain raiser is just 24 hours after Manchester United welcome Spurs to Old Trafford but Onana has agreed to play in both matches with his AFCON journey set to start 22 and a half hours after the full-time whistle in the Premier League match. The 27-year-old will then take the nearly eight-hour flight to the Ivory Coast on Sunday evening to be in place for the Monday match.

The agreement will also allow Onana to play in the Red Devils' FA Cup third-round clash with Wigan on Monday, January 8, which it is reported Onana was keen to participate in. He will miss Cameroon's pre-AFCON training camp in Saudi Arabia and the friendly against Zambia on Tuesday, January 9 in favour of club commitments.

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Erik ten Hag can't afford to drop points when Spurs visit Man Utd this month (Image: Getty Images)Erik ten Hag can't afford to drop points when Spurs visit Man Utd this month (Image: Getty Images)
Erik ten Hag can't afford to drop points when Spurs visit Man Utd this month (Image: Getty Images) | Getty Images

Ten Hag had previously spoken of Onana's involvement in the competition and said he was 'comfortable' with the club's 'strong group of keepers' in Altay Bayindir and Tom Heaton, but hoped his £47.2 million summer signing was 'available as much as possible'. Bayindir only joined the club in September and is yet to make his debut while veteran Heaton is yet to play this season and has been nursing a calf injury.

Ten Hag will have to turn to one of his backup options, likely Bayindir, for meetings with Wolves, West Ham and Aston Villa between now and February 11, with Onana possibly missing them all depending on Cameroon's progress. Ange Postecoglou is set to be without South Korean international Son Heung-min, Senegal star Pape Matar Sarr and Mali midfielder Yves Bissouma for the meeting with Manchester United and subsequent matches.

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