The report claims that Mourinho had made an inquiry for Nainggolan – who has claimed 13 goals from midfield this season – a few months ago, but no further steps were made after the Belgian made it clear he was happy at Roma.
Both Fabinho and Kroos have been subject to interest from Man United on various occasions; the former was on Mourinho’s list of supplementary transfer options last summer.
And according to Di Marzio, the Portuguese has expressed an interest in all three ahead of the next few months.
Nainggolan, with almost nine seasons of Serie A and international experience under his belt, would be a superb midfield asset for Mourinho: quick, skilful, deceptively strong and blessed with an acute sense of positional awareness that enables him to subtly break down opponents when they least expect it.
Fabinho was on the verge of a move to Old Trafford last summer; Mourinho, you felt, was keen on acquiring a technically gifted player capable of featuring in several positions to assuage the Louis van Gaal imposed homogeneity existing within the squad, and his introduction over the next few months would be welcomed as United continue to discover an identity under the Portuguese.
But Kroos is in another dimension to the aforementioned talents. He is perhaps the only midfielder in the world capable of replicating the unique style brought by Michael Carrick: that simplistic but unfailingly beautiful and effective way of managing games at the base of midfield, mixed with a hardwired sense of German efficiency and steel. Breaking the bank for him this summer may just be worth it.