Man Utd: £68m striker would be 'statement signing' at Old Trafford

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag

Manchester United signing Benfica striker Darwin Nunez would be a “statement” from Erik ten Hag, according to journalist Pete O’Rourke.

The 22-year-old announced himself on the European stage with a blistering campaign in front of goal, which has caught the attention of the Red Devils.

What’s the latest news involving Nunez?

With Edinson Cavani leaving Old Trafford following the expiration of his contract later this month, and Cristiano Ronaldo turning 38 in February, Ten Hag desperately needs to bring in a number nine if he wants United to challenge for a top four place next season.

According to talkSPORT, United have identified Nunez as that man and are pursuing a deal for the frontman, who scored an incredible 34 goals across all competitions.

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The report states that Benfica have set a £68m asking-price for his services, with Nunez keen on linking up with Ten Hag’s side despite wanting to play in the Champions League, which United can’t offer following their sixth-place finish.

Nunez was one of the top scorers European football last season, netting 10 more goals than Ronaldo, while outscoring the likes of Mohamed Salah, Erling Haaland and Harry Kane in the league.

What did O’Rourke say about Nunez?

He told GIVEMESPORT: “Nunez had a great season for Benfica, not just in the Portuguese league, but also in the Champions League, so his stock is pretty high, and I think he still has room for improvement and has real potential, so if Man United can sign him, it would be a statement signing from them.”

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How did Nunez perform last season?

Benfica’s third place finish in the Primeira Liga was a disappointing one for the Lisbon giants, but it was an exceptional campaign on a personal level for Nunez.

Not only did he take the top-flight by storm with 26 goals in 28 appearances, including three hat-tricks and five braces, but the young striker quickly proved himself on the Champions League stage.

In 10 outings in Europe’s elite competition, Nunez scored six goals, which came against the likes of Barcelona, Ajax, and Liverpool.

Furthermore, his goal in the 3-3 draw at Anfield led to high praise from Jurgen Klopp, who said that Nunez has got a ‘big career’ ahead of him, with the German touching on his pace, strength, and calmness in front of goal.

With that in mind, it’s no wonder United want to get their hands on him, especially after their worst goalscoring season for five years.

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