Manchester United are close to completing the deal for Juventus striker Mario Mandzukic, according to the latest reports.
Paulo Dybala, meanwhile, still has some reservations about his contract at the Old Trafford with the Argentinian expecting a £350,000-per-week wage amongst other things.
Juventus director, Fabio Paratici, was ‘reportedly’ in London to complete the Lukaku-Dybala swap when the question regarding the availability of Mario Mandzukic was put forward by the United counterparts, and as it turns out, the Croatian is available!
With the possible arrival of Romelu Lukaku at Juventus, Mario Mandzukic finds himself surplus to requirements under the new boss Maurizio Sarri.
The Croatian Striker had a decent time under Max Allegri’s title-winning season last year where he scored nine goals and provided six assists in the 23 league appearances in Serie A.
The 33-year-old doesn’t have the pace or quick acceleration like Rashford, but Mandzukic has a unique characteristic of converting those crosses from the wings into headed goals from inside the box, something that none of the Manchester United forward are able to do.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s interest in the Croatian means that United are looking to strengthen their plan B against the tough Premier League defenses that sit deep and suck away the spaces in the box.
The presence of Mandzukic in the middle would give Luke Shaw and Aaron Wan-Bissaka something to aim for with their crosses, while Mandzukic’s good hold up play could also bring in the likes of Martial, James, and Pogba into the mix.
Of course, Mario Mandzukic would be a stop-gap signing for Manchester United with Marcus Rashford still starting most of the games, but this looks like a smart piece of business if we can get this over the line.