Fabrizio Romano has claimed that Manchester United are “exploring the conditions” of a move for a new £50m+ centre-back.
Man Utd transfer news – new defender
Erik ten Hag’s side have just come off the back of consecutive 3-0 defeats at Old Trafford against Manchester City and Newcastle United, games which highlighted their defensive frailties. The Red Devils have suffered a number of injuries in defence this season, with the likes of Lisandro Martinez, Luke Shaw and Tyrell Malacia still sidelined, whereas Raphael Varane has also missed parts of the current campaign. As a result, Ten Hag has been forced to call upon the likes of Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire and Jonny Evans, with all three starting against City last weekend.
A new centre-back appeared to be on the club’s radar, with Sporting CP’s Goncalo Inacio and Nice’s Jean Clair-Todibo two names who were linked with moves to Manchester. However, recent reports claimed that Man Utd abandoned huge-money moves for the pair and will focus on signing cheaper alternatives, but when it comes to Inacio, a transfer may still be alive.
According to Romano, speaking on his YouTube channel, Man Utd are “exploring the conditions” of a move for Inacio, although the likes of Real Madrid, Liverpool and Newcastle are also named in the update, with a move to the Bernabeu yet to be agreed.
“What I can tell you is that at the moment, from what I’m told Real Madrid have not agreed anything with Sporting for Goncalo Inacio. There is no agreement, there is not even a concrete negotiation at this stage. Probably this rumour is coming from the mission of Real Madrid scouts who are always around to keep an eye on clubs, talents, players.
“Nothing is done and nothing is guaranteed for the January window, at the moment the situation is still quiet it’s just about normal scouting for a very talented player. Remember what I told you one month ago about Goncalo Inacio, he’s on the list of many clubs in England for a long time including Newcastle, including Liverpool, but also Manchester United are exploring the conditions of this player.
“At the moment it’s just about scouting, there’s still nothing concrete. What’s real is the release clause – €60m [£52m]. We will keep you posted if we hear more news about that.”
Goncalo Inacio stats
Inacio is just 22 years of age but is already a full Portugal international so will know the likes of Bruno Fernandes and Diogo Dalot already. He has progressed through Sporting CP’s academy and has already made 135 first-team appearances, scoring 11 times and providing eight assists. (Goncalo Inacio stats – Transfermarkt)
He has also been hailed by analyst Raj Chohan who said Inacio is a “leader” who has aerial dominance and immense recovery speed. With the likes of Real Madrid keen, Inacio could well be viewed as a star in the making by a number of clubs, so if United were able to win the race in a £50m+ deal, it may prove to be a shrewd piece of transfer business, making this on to watch.