Manchester United have been linked with a January move for Porto striker, Mehdi Taremi, as the club tries to help lighten the burden on Rasmus Højlund.
Inter are thought to be “looking for a new striker” with the experienced Porto star top of their list. Taremi had previously been linked with United in the summer, suggesting he’s a player Old Trafford officials have had on their radar for some time now.
With good reason.
Taremi scored twenty-two goals in Portugal last season, with a further five in seven Champions League games. The season prior, he scored twenty league goals. Across these two years Taremi also provided nineteen assists, indicating he’s a forward as capable of creating, as well as finishing, chances.
This season has seen a slight downturn in productivity, with the Iranian only returning three goals and three assists in fourteen games. This would still be more goals than all of United’s forwards (bar Højlund) combined, however.
And it’s the Danish striker who appears to be primary consideration of Old Trafford officials’ interest in Taremi.
Erik ten Hag is reported to want an “experienced centre-forward” in the January window, to help “lighten the load of responsibility” on his young striker.
Højlund has started virtually every game since his delayed introduction, working tirelessly in and out of possession.
Five goals in four Champions League games indicates his ruthlessness in front of goal, but he is yet to score domestically. The complete absence of creativity amongst his team-mates is the root cause of this drought, however.
When Højlund left the pitch last night against FC Copenhagen, the game proceeded to very quickly swing in the opposition’s favour. The Dane’s physicality offered a consistent outlet for his teammates, and he was constantly harassing the Copenhagen defenders.
Mason Mount, brought on in his stead, could not offer remotely the same threat, though it’s unfair to ask a diminutive attacking midfielder to lead the line for a team with ten men. The natural replacement for Højlund – Anthony Martial – continues to be an irrelevant member of the squad, with the club though to be open to his departure in January.
As such, the reported interest of United in Taremi makes sense. A figure of €10m is suggested as the fee required to secure the 31-year old’s services.
With Højlund being the lone bright spot in the United attacking unit this season, any efforts that can be made to help preserve his brightness should be made.