Manchester United are interested in signing Sporting Lisbon defender Goncalo Inacio ahead of the January transfer window, according to Portuguese publication Record (page 16).
The Red Devils have been long linked with a move for the Portugal international. He was first on their radar in the summer of 2022 before they purchased Lisandro Martinez from Ajax.
United were fancied to make a fresh approach in the last transfer window but the centre-back ended up signing a new contract. Sporting raised his release clause from €45 million to €60m.
Record highlight that United, Liverpool and Real Madrid are among suitors for the left-footed defender, but Sporting have no plans of negotiating a transfer fee at the start of next year.
They want to keep him until the summer at least and any interested club would have to trigger his buy-out clause to secure his services when the transfer window reopens.
Inacio’s teammate would be a better fit for United
The 22-year-old has been linked with the Red Devils over the past 18 months, but the hierarchy have not made any approach to land his signature from Sporting.
In our view, the speculation could be agent-driven. United’s name is being used to attract suitors for the centre-back in either January or at the end of the season.
Inacio is no doubt a quality player and would be a solid competitor for Martinez at left centre-back.
However, we would personally prefer United to explore a deal for his teammate Ousmane Diomande, who has established himself as an important player in no time.
The Ivorian only joined Sporting at the start of the year and he is already an undisputed starter for them.
Both him and Inacio are good ball-playing defenders, but he has fared better than the Portuguese when it comes to making tackles, winning duels and ball recoveries.
Diomande is better suited for the Premier League than Inacio in our opinion. He won’t come on the cheap either. There is a €80m release clause in his Sporting contract.
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