Man Utd to repeat best signing of Solskjaer era by launching club-record move for exciting star

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Mehdi Taremi and Goncalo Inacio, Porto vs Sporting Lisbon Credit: Alamy
Mehdi Taremi and Goncalo Inacio, Porto vs Sporting Lisbon Credit: Alamy

Manchester United are looking to get their hands on another Bruno Fernandes-type signing and it could end up being a record sale for the player’s current club, according to a report.

Fernandes joined Man Utd in January 2020 when the Red Devils agreed to pay Sporting Lisbon an initial £47million for him, though the deal had the potential to rise to £67.7m through add-ons. The attacking midfielder has gone on to have a huge impact for Man Utd, managing 60 goals and 51 assists in 170 appearances for the club.

He received criticism last season when he failed to perform under interim boss Ralf Rangnick, but Fernandes is now thriving under Rangnick’s replacement Erik ten Hag.

Fernandes has notched 10 goals and 12 assists in 44 games this season, while also captaining Man Utd when Harry Maguire is not in the team.

The Portugal international being on top form will be integral if Man Utd are to add to their Carabao Cup triumph this season. They remain in the Europa League and FA Cup, while they are also in a great position to qualify for next season’s Champions League.

Fernandes was undoubtedly Man Utd’s best signing from the Ole Gunnar Solskjaer era, and it looks like club chiefs are planning a transfer repeat.

READ MORE: Two Man Utd transfers facing ruin with Ten Hag stunned by shock sacking and rumoured £100m bid

Man Utd are hoping to complete another raid on Sporting, this time for 21-year-old centre-back Goncalo Inacio.

Despite his tender age, Inacio is already an important part of the Sporting first team, having made 40 appearances across all competitions this term.

Man Utd want player who helped down Arsenal

He played every minute as Sporting pulled off a shock to dump Arsenal out of the Europa League in the round of 16.

The defender scored in the first leg, brushing off Gabriel Martinelli from a Sporting corner and then heading past goalkeeper Matt Turner. That game ended 2-2.

Sporting advanced to the next round with a penalty shoot-out victory in the second leg, following a wonderstrike from Pedro Goncalves.

A week ago, it emerged that Man Utd are ‘attentive’ to Inacio’s situation. Clearly they have been impressed by his performances both in Portugal and in the Europa League.

And there has now been a double update on the transfer pursuit from Sport Witness, who cite Portuguese sources A Bola and Journal de Noticias.

They report that Man Utd are joined by Newcastle United and Paris Saint-Germain in trying to capture Inacio.

Sporting are aware of the growing interest in their player and are therefore hoping to renew his contract. The main reason for this is to increase his release clause, which would rise from €45m (£39.5m) to €80m (£70.4m).

If Sporting are forced into selling Inacio, then they want him to become their record departure. And an exit at £70.4m would eclipse the deal which took Fernandes to Man Utd – Sporting’s current record sale.

Man Utd’s chances of signing Inacio have been given a lift as the two-cap international is not convinced on a transfer to Newcastle. This means Man Utd are the best-placed English team to snare him.

However, PSG are still lurking and must therefore be fought off if Ten Hag is to get his man.

£70.4m does sound like a lot for a someone who has never played outside of his native Portugal. But Man Utd can justify the transfer by pointing to some of the former Sporting players who have done very well in the Prem. The list includes Fernandes, Joao Moutinho, Matheus Nunes, Raphinha and Joao Palhinha.

Meanwhile, Wednesday’s Transfer Gossip includes Man Utd preparing to make their move for a world-class forward.

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