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Man Utd express interest in Goncalo Inacio, have best conditions to sign him

Manchester United have expressed an interest in Sporting defender Goncalo Inacio and seem to have the best conditions to sign him this summer, Portuguese outlet A Bola claims.

The Red Devils are in the pursuit of a new central defender. Ajax’s Jurrien Timber was mentioned as the top target earlier this month, but there has been no progress over a potential transfer.

This may suggest that the club are looking at alternative options. A Bola cites that they have expressed an interest in Inacio and are collecting more information over the player’s situation.

Inacio currently has a €45 million release clause on his contract, but Sporting are willing to sanction his departure if they receive a package of around €40m during the transfer window.

The Red Devils have yet to make a formal bid, but it is suggested that they have the ‘best conditions’ to sign him due to the presence of agent Miguel Pinho, who also represents Bruno Fernandes.

The Portuguese representative built a close relationship with United after bringing the midfielder to Old Trafford, and he could be ‘decisive’ if the club opt to pursue the services of Inacio.

Our view:

Inacio had his first full season with Sporting last term. The 20-year-old was impressive with his ability to clear his lines while also controlling the game with his excellent distribution.

He completed 90 per cent of his passes with an average of four long balls per appearance. Meanwhile, he also chipped in with five goals and four assists from 45 outings.

His progress will have caught the eye of United scouts. It remains to be seen whether Erik ten Hag approves a possible deal. Inacio’s strong ball-playing ability would suit his system.

On top of this, he is a left-footed central defender, something that United have lacked in their squad. They were fancied to sign Villarreal’s Pau Torres for the same reason last summer.

The Spaniard was heavily linked before Raphael Varane joined from Real Madrid. United are still in the mix for the 25-year-old, but Inacio could be pursued instead if they are eyeing a long-term signing.

Unlike Torres, Inacio could be considered as one for the future and may be slowly integrated into the starting line-up. Ten Hag could groom him into an elite performer as he had done with several players at Ajax.

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