Manchester United are on the verge of completing an astonishing deal for Jose Mourinho’s prime transfer target this summer.
Manchester Evening News reports that Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann is set to swap the Spanish capital for the North West of England this summer in a stunning deal worth £86m- which would put the French striker in the same bracket as world-record signing Paul Pogba.
Jose Mourinho is keen to land Griezmann’s services this summer and sources close to the French international indicate that a move is on the verge of completion– as Atletico are powerless to stop their star-man from leaving if his €100m release-clause is met.
Griezmann’s arrival would signal another major statement of intent from the Red Devils, who splashed the cash last summer to bring the likes of Eric Bailly, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Old Trafford, and it would kick-off another summer of spending for Mourinho as he builds a new-look side.
How would he fit in?
Manchester United would have an abundance of attacking force with Griezmann’s arrival, as the Red Devils already boast the likes of Ibrahimovic, Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial. However, captain Wayne Rooney is likely to leave.
With Ibrahimovic turning 36 next season, the Swedish striker is also not a long-term option for Mourinho and Griezmann’s arrival would ensure that the Red Devils have a top-class striker ready to take the mantle when Ibrahimovic inevitably moves on.
It could trigger a change in set-up for United though as Griezmann would likely play alongside Ibrahimovic up-top, forcing Anthony Martial into a wide-role with Henrikh Mkhitaryan on the other flank- which would hand United a sensational attacking line.
There is questions of what it would mean for Marcus Rashford though, as the England international would find opportunities increasingly difficult to come by. However, with Ibrahimovic likely only having another year left, the position is there for Rashford to grab in the future.
Would it be a world-record deal?
It’s unlikely that Manchester United would have to surpass the world-record fee they paid Juventus for Paul Pogba last summer, which came to £89m, as Griezmann’s release-clause of €100m equates to around £86m- £3m short than his compatriot.
Griezmann’s signature would certainly be right up their amongst the biggest fees in football history though and Manchester United would offer stunning wages in a deal to the Frenchman- with Rooney’s likely departure alone freeing up around £300k-a-week.
Whatever United spend would likely be recouped in sponsorship deals and shirt sales though, as Griezmann’s popularity worldwide would boost United’s bank account and add to the list of world-class players plying their trade at Old Trafford.