Benfica raise the asking price for striker Darwin Nunez in the summer in transfer blow to cash-strapped Manchester United
According to Record (h/t The Sun), Benfica have raised the transfer fee they have quoted for striker Darwin Nunez ahead of the summer transfer window, which will come as a blow to Manchester United who are low on transfer funds.
Nunez has enjoyed a breakout season at Benfica, leading the forward line for the club and racking up goals for his team. The Uruguayan has been a goal threat to opposing defences in Portugal as well as in Europe, playing a crucial role in the side’s Champions League campaign.
The Portuguese club managed to make it through to the quarter-finals of the UCL this term, eventually getting knocked out by Liverpool. However, their journey saw them face teams such as Barcelona, Bayern Munich, and Ajax, with Nunez scoring against all of them – including the Reds.
He has been in prolific form in Portugal as well, but unfortunately, could not help Benfica win the league table. The club only managed to finish third in the Primeira Liga table, with Sporting CP emerging as the champions.
Increased transfer fee for Nunez
As a result of the 22-year-old’s form this season, Benfica have raised his asking price to £84m. This will be a major blow to United, who only have £100m to spend on new players ahead of the upcoming summer transfer window.
Incoming new manager Erik ten Hag is expected to lead a squad rebuild, but the limited budget of the English side could see him search for free agents in order to add reinforcements, if necessary. It is not quite a bad option to consider given that stars like Paulo Dybala, Franck Kessie, and Ousmane Dembele see their contracts expire soon.
Although it remains to be seen if these are the kind of players that ten Hag wants in his squad next summer, the Dutchman is planning an overhaul of the squad when he takes over. The forward line is an area that will require attention, given the current state of things at the club.
The Manchester side have 37-year-old Cristiano Ronaldo and 35-year-old Edinson Cavani to rely on for the goals, given the two players are the only recognised strikers in the squad. Marcus Rashford is there to deputise for the pair, but he has been out of form this season.
More Manchester United News
- Manchester United target and PSV Eindhoven winger Cody Gakpo speaks out about his future ahead of the summer
- Manchester United in talks with Ajax Amsterdam over transfer of defender Jurrien Timber in summer
- Manchester United to battle Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain to sign £68m-rated Lazio star Sergej Milinkovic-Savic
Furthermore, Cavani is expected to leave the club in the summer when his contract with the club expires. It is also not known if Ronaldo intends to stay beyond the transfer window, with the Red Devils failing to qualify for the Champions League next season.
Nunez would have made for a fantastic younger replacement for the veterans, but his transfer price is nearly almost all of the English giant’s transfer budget. Only time will tell if United manage to get the asking price reduced, or if another solution can be arrived at in order to sign the Uruguayan.