Jose Mourinho has identified a long-term replacement for Wayne Rooney, in the form of Atletico Madrid striker Antoine Griezmann.
The French striker is one of the hottest properties around Europe at the moment, with many clubs chasing his signature.
Arsenal were reportedly attempting to convince the striker to move to the Emirates this summer, with manager Arsene Wenger having a chat with the forward while he was on International duty with France at Euro 2016.
According to Bleacher Report, Manchester United are now in for Griezmann, who lit up the tournament in the summer with six goals and two assists. Mourinho sees the 25-year-old as the perfect long term replacement for United captain Wayne Rooney, who will turn 31 in October.
Rooney has been the fulcrum of United’s teams since joining the club in 2004, and is just 4 shy of breaking Sir Bobby Charlton’s goal-scoring record of 249 goals for the club.
Griezmann had just recently signed a fresh five-year contract with Atletico Madrid that would keep him at the club till 2021. This is likely to cause a massive rise in his asking price should United come knocking, and the buy-out clause inserted into his new contract is said to be around £76 million.
The Red Devils are not one to be deterred by a lofty asking price – evident in the re-signing of Paul Pogba for a world record fee of £89 million from Juventus – and would not mind meeting Griezmann’s price tag.
Rooney recently announced that he would be retiring from International football once the 2018 World Cup in Russia concludes, and this has been seen by many as a motive to increase his playing days in club football.
Mourinho has spent around £150 million in transfers this summer, but is already planning ahead for the next season, and will make Griezmann his prime target for the 2017 summer transfer window.