Manchester United could find themselves in the middle of a football transfer merry-go-round this summer as top clubs look to trade strikers.
The main names being linked with summer moves are Lautaro Martinez, Timo Werner, Erling Haaland, Harry Kane and Gabriel Jesus.
First up is Martinez, currently at Italian side Inter Milan. A number of clubs have been pursuing the talented 22-year-old – dubbed the new Aguero by Argentinian legend Hernan Crespo – with Barcelona the frontrunners. However, the Catalans are not willing (or are unable) to pay the €111 million (£96 million) July release clause.
If the release clause isn’t met, Inter boss Antonio Conte would only sanction the sale of Martinez if he can find a replacement. Top of his list is Red Bull Leipzig’s Timo Werner, another target for the Red Devils, but Liverpool are reported to be close to agreeing a signature for the German.
As if that wasn’t complicated enough, Manchester City’s Gabriel Jesus is rumoured to be a target for Serie A giants Juventus and City are reported to be interested in Martinez and Werner to replace him.
The Citizens have also been linked with Borussia Dortmund’s Erling Haaland, who is reportedly Real Madrid’s top target. United are reportedly still keen on the Norwegian and would match any offer that triggers his buyout clause. City could also turn their attentions to Harry Kane, who in turn has also been linked with a move to both the Bernabeu and to Old Trafford.
It is a confusing picture and one which is complicated beyond measure by the fact that football’s finances are in an unprecedented state of flux. This increases the probability of swap deals rather than big money signings although these are notoriously difficult to negotiate.
It is gearing up to being an interesting summer.
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