Manchester United are set to launch a move to sign Gabriel Magalhaes after joining the likes of Arsenal and Napoli in the race to sign the £25m-rated Lille defender, according to the Express.
Magalhaes joined Lille three years ago and has developed into one of the most highly-rated young centre-backs in French football this season after making 34 appearances in all competitions to help the club qualify for Europe.
The 22-year-old’s impressive form has attracted interest from a number of clubs with the Express claiming that Arsenal, Chelsea, Newcastle United and Wolves have all been keeping a close eye on his progress while Napoli are also trying to lure him to Italy.
Mikel Arteta desperately needs to strengthen his defence following a disastrous campaign that saw Arsenal finish eighth in the Premier League and Magalhaes is one of several centre-backs being linked with a move to North London this summer.
Napoli have emerged as serious suitors for the Brazilian U20 international with the Express suggesting that the Serie A outfit are hoping to push through a £100m double deal that would also involve Magalhaes and Lille team-mate Victor Osimhen.
However, the newspaper says Manchester United are now ready to make their move for Magalhaes after identifying him as a cheaper alternative to Milan Skriniar – who’s valued at around £75m by Inter Milan.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is in the market for a centre-back to partner Harry Maguire next season as he looks to build a squad capable of challenging for the title and the report says United could land Magalhaes for just £25m.
Th Red Devils will be able to flex their financial muscle in the transfer market after qualifying for the Champions League next season and buying Magalhaes would allow Solskjaer to pursue a big-money deal for Jadon Sancho.
It remains to be seen whether the likes of Arsenal or Chelsea will step-up their interest in the South American defender but it sounds like Man Utd are ready to make their move and Magalhaes could prove to be a terrific signing.
The left-footed centre-back is known for his composure on the ball and at 6ft 3inches he is excellent in the air so he could be the ideal partner for Maguire if United manage to lure him to Old Trafford this summer.