Manchester United weigh £40m summer raid Sports star

Newcastle are also interested in Goncalo Inacio from Sporting (Image: Getty Images)

Manchester United are monitoring Sporting defender Goncalo Inacio and could make a move for the youngster this summer, according to reports in Portugal.

The 21-year-old is one of the highest-rated young defenders in the world and is expected to be the next academy graduate to trade Lisbon for a big-money move to a European giant.

Inácio was part of Portugal’s 55-man preliminary squad for the World Cup but failed to make the final cut for the tournament in Qatar, but is in line to make his senior debut next week.

Although the central defense pairing of Fernando Santos, Rubén Dias and Pepe, 40, have been selected, new coach Roberto Martínez is expected to rely on Inacio, who has not been capped, for the upcoming matches against Liechtenstein and Luxembourg.

The youngster has impressed massively this season under Ruben Amorim and, according to Portuguese newspaper O Jogo, both Manchester United and Newcastle have taken notice.

Inacio is believed to feel he is ready to join a top European club and is in favor of a move to Old Trafford rather than St James’ Park.

The Red Devils are ‘on the lookout’ for the possibility of signing Inácio this summer and there are indications that he could act as cover and competition for Lisandro Martínez in the left center role.

Inacio impressed against Arsenal in the Europa League (Photo: Getty)

Inacio is cultured and confident on the ball and would likely see plenty of playing time, with Erik ten Hag frequently rotating his team, while United are expected to try to dump captain Harry Maguire in the summer, creating even more opportunities. .

The Red Devils are also believed to have seen Inacio up close in Sporting’s Europa League round of 16 win over Arsenal, with the defender impressing on both legs, and particularly at the Emirates.

However, United may need to move quickly as Sporting are currently trying to increase a release clause in the centre-back’s contract, meaning he can be bought for around €45m (£40m).

Sporting want to secure a contract extension for Inácio that would lock in his long-term future and increase his buyout clause to 80 million euros (£70 million).

If United don’t make a move this summer, Inacio is described as ‘uninterested’ in a move to Newcastle and will only leave Sporting for a European heavyweight who plays regularly in the Champions League.

Inacio is a key part of Sporting’s warm-up game from the back and averages 75 passes per game in the Portuguese league, the most of any player at the club, and has three assists.

MORE: Manchester United approach former Liverpool midfielder Marko Grujic

MORE: Manchester United are in talks to sign Monaco defender Axel Disasi this summer

For more stories like this, check out our sports page.

Follow Metro Sport for the latest news on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


Leave a Reply