Football

Manolas is one of Europe's highest-rated centre-backs.

Manchester United enquire into deal for £30m-rated Kostas Manolas

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Widespread change is set to ensue upon Jose Mourinho’s highly-anticipated arrival at Manchester United.

The Portuguese maverick has reportedly agreed to personal terms and will undoubtedly look to revamp the Red Devils’ squad to his liking.

Unsurprisingly, a host of world-class European stars have been linked with moves to Old Trafford this summer, with some rumours more believable than others.

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Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Karim Benzema, Raphael Varane, John Stones - heck, even Laurent Koscienly - have emerged as rumoured transfer targets for Mourinho.

However, reports suggest that United have taken genuine steps towards signing one of their targets.

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According to the Daily Mail, the 20-time league champions have enquired into Kostas Manolas’ availability ahead of a potential move from AS Roma.

The 24-year-old is one of Europe’s highest-rated centre-backs and has found himself become a subject of interest for several European heavyweights.

Mourinho’s former employers, Chelsea, are also reported suitors, though Manolas’ €40 million (£30 million) price tag is thought to have put them off.

His pace, strength and tough-tackling approach are exactly the attributes United need, even if Chris Smalling and Daley Blind performed so admirably last season.

The simple fact of the matter is that Blind is not a centre-back by trade; defensive reinforcements are most certainly needed.

AS Roma v Carpi FC - Serie A

United could face a few complications in trying to lure Manolas, though. The same report claims that half of any transfer fee would be owed to former club Olympiacos - but only if he’s sold before September 1, 2016.

As a result, the Greece international could well arrive at United on loan before completing a permanent move to ensure Roma receive the full fee.

Elsewhere, Ibrahimovic appears on the verge of arriving at the Theatre of Dreams following weeks of speculation.

Sweden’s captain is a free agent this summer after his Paris Saint-Germain contract expired, with United hot favourites to land the 34-year-old striker.

But don’t be fooled by Ibrahimovic’s age - this is a man who remarkably scored 38 goals in Ligue 1 last season and steered PSG to a domestic double.

FBL-FRA-LIGUE1-PSG-NANTES

His experience, power and finishing would be welcome assets at United amidst the club’s bid to climb their way back to the peak of English - and European - football.

And Cristiano Ronaldo believes his former employers can do just that with Mourinho at the helm.

According to Sky Sports, the Portuguese superstar said: “He’s already signed, hasn’t he? I think it’s good. If it’s something United wanted I think it’s good.

“I hope Manchester United get back to being what they were because it’s an impressive club, but in the last years they lacked an identity a bit.

“And it hurts me seeing United like that because it’s a club I carry in my heart. I wish Mourinho can restore them back to the top."

Man Utd fans: is Kostas Manolas the perfect defensive partner to Chris Smalling? Let us know your thoughts below.

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Topics:
Wayne Rooney
Manchester United
UEFA Champions League
Europa League
Football
Premier League
Cristiano Ronaldo
David Beckham

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