Manchester United’s hopes of signing long-term target Sergej Milinković-Savić have taken a huge boost this week, with Lazio’s president admitting he could not stop the coveted midfielder from leaving if the right offer came along.
United initially showed interest in the Serbian international last summer but were thought to be put off by the player’s sizeable price-tag, as well as midfield reinforcements not being high up on the club’s agenda at the time.
This summer, however, United are in need of a central midfielder with Ander Herrera joining French champions Paris Saint-Germain. Lazio are thought to be holding out for £90m – significantly higher than United’s reported valuation of £72m – and were this fee to be met then Lazio president Claudio Lotito admits the club would not stand in his way: “We’ve created a glasshouse, where it’s understood that people can’t be forced to perform their roles in an environment where they feel cramped,” Lotito told Corriere dello Sport.
“Milinković has shown sincerity and responsibility, so that isn’t the case with him. He feels good here. Last year I managed to resist the assaults of other clubs, but this year I’d have fewer weapons if a different solution was proposed to the player. Let’s say that I used up some of my weapons last year,” Lotito added.
With the transfer saga surrounding Paul Pogba still rumbling on, Milinković-Savić would be an ample replacement, having drawn several comparisons to the Frenchman in terms of stature, style of play and ability. It remains a possibility, however, that United may yet retain Pogba, therefore should Milinković-Savić also be added, United’s midfield for the coming campaign would be strengthened considerably.
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