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Could Victor Lindelof finally make a move to Manchester United?

Victor Lindelof is a player many Manchester United supporters will have read about due to the fact he was heavily linked to the Old Trafford club during the January transfer window, with a move seemingly being prepared, then not for the Benfica defender. It is now being reported, that after a change of heart by Jose Mourinho, United will make a move for the Swedish defender after all, although this is just a rumour and an early one at that with the season more than three weeks away from being completed. It is being reported that United are in talks with Benfica with a view of signing Lindelof for £40 million, although the Portuguese club will be holding out for more like they do all the time. This season, Mourinho has seen Eric Bailly, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Chris Smalling all suffer injuries with Rojo out for the remainder of the season and both Jones and Smalling having been out for the last month. Bailly was injured against Swansea City on Sunday afternoon at Old Trafford, it is not yet known as to whether he has a severe injury or not.

What is being reported and by who?

The Mirror are currently reporting that United are making a £40 million move for Lindelof, with Benfica president Luis Filipe Vieira reportedly holding out for £50 million, which is the players release clause. The 22-year-old did not leave Benfica in January due to various ‘sticking points’, one of those being a £3.5m compensation package to overcome the sell-on agreement to former club Vasteras. Mourinho has a central defensive problem to deal with in the summer. It is likely that Eric Bailly and Marcos Rojo will be retained by the club, Daley Blind of proficient in other positions, so he could be safe also, but the injury prone duo, Phil Jones, and Chris Smalling will both be in doubt, especially with Mourinho also looking at Burnley defender Michael Keane. The Metro have also reported that Lindelof could move to Old Trafford this summer, with the Bleacher Report also making the claims.

What type of player is Victor Lindelof?

Victor Lindelof is a central defender and has played for Benfica since he was 17. The Swedish international propelled himself into the first team last season after he was noticed playing above his potential in the youth side. Lindelof found his place in the first team and has never looked back. Many will suggest that moving to a big club could have been too much for Lindelof, which may be the case, but you have that risk with any player, experienced or not. Look at Angel Di Maria – he was a waste of money. Lindelof is calm and confident on the pitch, which is one of the reasons he established himself in the heart of the defence. Zlatan Ibrahimovic had some good things to say about his compatriot, saying:

“I think Victor is doing great things, he is playing good for Benfica, he gets a lot of responsibility for the national team now, he is growing. Is he good enough for United? I think he’s good enough for the big clubs out there. It’s up to him what he wants and what the situation says. Whatever he chooses will be good for him. I know he is hot on the market so let him make the right choice, what fits him good.”

Lindelof has made 38 appearances for Benfica this season, not scoring any goals, which is not something he will offer much of, but playing well in Benfica’s bid to retain the Primeira Liga for the fourth time in a row, sitting three points clear of FC Porto at this moment in time. Whether Lindelof remains at Benfica in the summer, heads to Manchester United or to another club, they will have a calm and composed defender, one worthy of forming a defensive partnership and leading the team to glory.

Likelihood of the transfer?

Lindelof was a dead cert to make the move to Old Trafford during the January transfer window, but the move never materialised and may not this summer either. United are in the market for one or two central defenders, but there is more to Lindelof and Keane out there. Mourinho has been linked to John Terry, who will leave Chelsea this summer, but that would be a lazy rumour also. Lindelof is a talented player, who at 22 is playing in a tough league, but will be tested in the Premier League, like Eric Bailly has this season. Bailly has done well, in fact, better than expected. Lindelof spoke about staying at Benfica in the winter transfer window, suggesting he was right to remain at Benfica, rather than moving to the Theatre of Dreams. Reported by Expressen via The Sun Lindelof said:

“It feels good that I extended my stay by one year. I enjoy playing for the club and feel I evolve every day there. It was an easy choice. Both parties were very happy and they wanted to give me a sign that they are satisfied with what I’ve done there. Much has been written but it’s nothing I have focused on. I have always focused on what was important to me and that’s the team. [The rumours] makes no difference to me. As I’ve said I’ve been thriving at Benfica and that’s where the focus has been. A lot has been written and I’ve said nothing, I’ve been focused. I have a long contract at Benfica and I’m thriving there. It’s a big club and I’m developing every day. I’m only 22 years old and there is no stress [to push through a move].”

United and Mourinho will continue to be linked to many defenders this summer, being that is one of the main positions the Portuguese manager needs to strengthen, which has been shown by the continued injury list amongst the same players. You may even see some players link themselves to a move to United, possibly on the hunt for another club, or just to ensure they get a better contract at their current club. Silly season will commence very soon.

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