Jose Mourinho looks set to raid his old Club by bringing midfield general Nemanja Matic to Manchester United in a deal expected to be in the region of £35m. The Serbian international is wanted by United to fill the defensive midfield role that Michael Carrick has long held, and Mourinho has remained a huge fan of the player he once brought to Chelsea.
FantasySports.co.uk understand that United have turned to Matic after being frustrated by Tottenham in their pursuit of initial target Eric Dier, with Chelsea looking to make a profit on the £21m they purchased him from Benfica for, as well as the cash going towards the expected signings of Monaco’s Tiemoue Bakayoko and Juventus full back Alex Sandro. They are also expected to directly replace outgoing centre forward Diego Costa.
The signing of Matic should aid the form of French star Paul Pogba, who struggled to find any consistent form in the United midfield – but with Matic sitting deeper and allowing Pogba more freedom in the middle of the pitch, Red Devil fans will hope and indeed expect Pogba to be able to express himself more and live up to the £90m price tag that was placed on his head by Juventus a year ago.
Elsewhere, United remain favourites to bring Real Madrid forward Alvaro Morata to Old Trafford to bolster their attack after releasing Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Morata seems keen to join Mourinho, but the snag here could be the price, with United valuing the player at £60m, but Madrid holding out for £70m minimum.
There is also news that United are making a shock move for Barcelona’s Brazilian star Neymar, who has a release clause in his contract should £170m be tabled – which United are seemingly willing to meet. Although an amount would decimate the United coffers, they see this as a prudent investment, with Neymar not only contributing hugely on the pitch, but also off it, with marketing and merchandise income expected to eventually dwarf the initial outlay required to bring the player to Old Trafford. Whether Neymar would want to ply his trade in the blood and thunder of the English Premier League and live in England could be the biggest hurdle United will need to overcome, with money apparently not a problem.