Man Utd ‘now in pole’ for top target as Chelsea ‘drop out’ with ‘titanic £133m bid’ revealed

Joe Williams
Man Utd target Victor Osimhen celebrates scoring a goal

Man Utd are now leading the race to sign Napoli striker Victor Osimhen with Chelsea on the verge of dropping out, according to reports.

The Red Devils are on the lookout for a new striker in the summer transfer market with Erik ten Hag still looking for a permanent replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo.

Ronaldo left at the end of November by mutual consent after giving a controversial interview to Piers Morgan ahead of the World Cup in Qatar.

Man Utd had to wait until January to sort out a temporary replacement with Wout Weghorst arriving on loan from Championship side Burnley.

The Netherlands international is yet to score a Premier League goal, although he has scored twice in other competitions, and he is very unlikely to be part of Ten Hag’s long-term plans.

Tottenham’s Harry Kane, Atalanta’s Rasmus Hojlund and Benfica’s Goncalo Ramos are among the names linked with a potential summer move to Man Utd.

But it now seems that Napoli’s Osimhen has become their top target ahead of the summer transfer window with Man Utd willing to splash out on the right player.

There have been worries about finances at Man Utd if the Glazers stay in charge of the club, amid takeover talks, but a report revealed recently that they have access to a ‘company credit card’ that will allow Ten Hag to spend big.

And Football Insider claims that Man Utd are ‘now in pole position’ land Osimhen – who has scored 21 goals in 25 Serie A matches this summer – with ‘financial issues’ at Chelsea handing the Red Devils a ‘huge boost’.

Osimhen has been ‘top of their shopping lists’ but Chelsea are ‘struggling to keep within Financial Fair Play limitations and could drop out of the race’.

With a deal for the Nigerian international now close to being ‘financially impossible’ for Chelsea, rivals Man Utd are ‘now considered the Premier League frontrunners to sign Osimhen’.

But they will have competition from Ligue 1 giants Paris Saint-Germain with the French side ‘lining up a titanic £133m bid’ and Man Utd ‘will likely have to match or even better’ it to secure Osimhen’s signature.

Victor Osimhen, Napoli, February 2023

CBS Sports journalist Ben Jacobs revealed earlier this month that Osimhen has “one eye on” a move to Man Utd as he “dreams” of playing in the Premier League.

Jacobs told TEAMtalk: “Manchester United are still very much looking for that traditional number nine and everybody is getting excited about whether it’s going to be Kane or Osimhen, but both are incredibly difficult to pull off.

“Napoli won’t want to sell Osimhen, but he’s been there long enough now that a deal could well be possible.

“I think people forget as well that when Osimhen joined Napoli from Lille, the number they paid all in was €80million and €70million of that was up front. But it’s kind of complicated by the fact that it was part cash, part players, but Napoli are looking at the overall value of that deal and basically doubling it, which is where if you take that base fee, the valuation of cash plus players €70million and double that.

“140 to 150 million euros is the ballpark because they feel like he’s more than doubled his value since coming to the club. So that’s the difference between him and Kvara who they pay peanuts for.

“When you sign a player and invest a big fee, which is what Napoli did, they want a financial return if they’re to let the player go. But Osimhen dreams of the Premier League. And I think Manchester United is more likely than Chelsea at this point because Osimhen’s always had one eye on Manchester United.

“He actually nearly joined them before moving to Napoli, but didn’t because he wasn’t convinced he’d get the game time.”

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