Of all the aspects that new Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has transformed since his arrival, the defence has been the most notable.
From conceding the most number of goals in the club’s Premier League history last season to having the fifth-meanest defence in the league this term, the team has come a long way.
Maguire out, new defender in
He has fallen so far down the pecking order that Luke Shaw has started in the left centre-back slot on a couple of occasions.
The latest player to be linked with a move to Old Trafford next summer is Sporting Lisbon star Goncalo Inacio.
According to today’s edition of O Jogo, Sporting are resigned to the fact that they will most likely have to part ways with their star defender next summer.
The article mentions that United were one of the admirers of the 21-year-old last summer but his release clause of €45 million ultimately put them off.
Inacio, the latest Sporting star
Inacio is considered to be one of the best ball-playing left-footed centre-backs and with Shaw the only legitimate replacement for Martinez, it is likely that Ten Hag will be eyeing a quality backup in that position.
Sporting do not want to lose him on the cheap like they did with Matheus Nunes and are adamant they will not let him go unless someone triggers the buy-out clause.
It is mentioned that the young defender could soon earn a place in the national set-up under new manager Roberto Martinez. That might help Sporting raise the price even further.
However, the acquisition will not be easy for United as Newcastle United, Paris Saint-Germain and Wolverhampton Wanderers are also keeping tabs on Inacio.
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