Jose Mourinho’s top transfer targets for Manchester United have long been talked about but it appears that one man is rising to the top of that extensive and exclusive list: Romelu Lukaku.
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A report in the Guardian states that Mourinho wants the 23-year-old Belgian forward to replace Zlatan Ibrahimovic — currently recovering from a serious knee injury and only contracted to United until this summer — as the “spearhead of the attack” at Old Trafford.
With Lukaku yet to sign a new contract at Everton, the PL’s top goalscorer is a wanted man this summer as he has two years on his current deal with the Toffees.
Would Lukaku fit in at United, and perhaps most importantly under Mourinho?
It’s a tough one to break down. From a simplistic standpoint you’d think that with the amount of chances United create from wide positions each game that Lukaku could slot straight in for Zlatan and be ready to roll. Yet the game gets a little more complex than that, as we all know.
Lukaku’s hold up play isn’t as strong a Zlatan or close to Diego Costa or Didier Drogba, two other target forwards Mourinho has recruited in the past. He’s penchant for having a powerful No.9 capable of finishing crosses is a key part of his philosophy and Lukaku’s development this season proves he can do just that.
Mourinho was not the biggest fan of Lukaku in the past as he loaned him out to West Brom and Everton when he was manager of Chelsea and eventually sold him on to Everton for $38.5 million. Per the report, it is suggested that Lukaku would cost United anywhere in the region of $90 million but with his agent Mino Raiola already having Paul Pogba, Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Zlatan at Old Trafford, surely he will be pushing for Lukaku to get another huge payday and deliver the goals United will need badly next season.
As for the towering Belgian forward, he may well be able to sort out any issues he and Mourinho had relatively quickly but there will always be a few thoughts lingering in the back of his mind: what did he sell me? Why did he think I wasn’t good enough?
Those type of questions may well fuel Lukaku to succeed under Mourinho.