Manchester United may have just finalised their squad for the first half of the season following the summer transfer window – but attention has already turned to January.
According to reports, Manchester United are still looking for another striker. Cristiano Ronaldo nearly left the 20-time champions over the summer due to a lack of Champions League football – and United would like to replace him by the start of next season, when his two-year deal will have ended.
So far, Marcus Rashford has been leading the line for the Red Devils. Anthony Martial played as the No.9 for Ten Hag during preseason, following his loan spell at Sevilla during the second half of last season.
Now, The Express (opens in new tab) claims that Victor Osimhen was on the radar for Ten Hag and that his employers Napoli were willing to part with the Nigerian. The condition, however, would have been for Ronaldo to head in the opposite direction and United to pay €100 million – or around £85m – to secure his signature.
Osimhen has set Napoli alight with his goals, netting two in four appearances already this season and has been on the radar for the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea over the years.
Now, one Italian journalist has claimed it’s the striker’s “destiny” to leave southern Italy amid Premier League interest.
“Victor Osimhen is stronger than Cristiano Ronaldo but overall it could have fit,” Sandro Sabatini told Radio Sportiva (opens in new tab).
The €100m for Osimhen you can also take next year – it is in his destiny to leave. Cristiano Ronaldo you either get him now or you don’t. And if he had landed at Napoli, it would have given Aurelio De Laurentiis’ club great visibility.”
Osimhen is valued at around £58m by Transfermarkt (opens in new tab).
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Atletico Madrid star Yannick Carrasco had been touted, while both Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Jamie Vardy were at point linked. United were also interested in Bayer Leverkusen-bound Callum Hudson-Odoi and Atletico apparently offered a swap deal to bring Ronaldo to Madrid.
Erik ten Hag admitted uncertainty over Cristiano Ronaldo’s future, while hailing Bruno Fernandes amidst Scott McTominay’s handball controversy. Elsewhere, pundits have been torn over the new Red Devils signings with Graeme Souness suggesting Lisandro Martinez will be “found out” and Rio Ferdinand scoffing at Souness’s comments about Casemiro.