Jose Mourinho looking to add Swiss forward to his Manchester United squad?

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho is reportedly chasing 19-year-old FC Basel and Switzerland forward Breel Embolo ahead of the 2016/17 Premier League season. The Sun report that the Old Trafford club is a £28 million target this summer in a bid to strengthen their attack in the run-up to the new season. Last season, United had Wayne Rooney and Anthony Martial as their main strikers, with the former spending time on the sidelines and also playing in a midfield role. This saw 18-year-old Marcus Rashford step up, making 18 appearances and scoring eight goals in all competitions, also making his England debut in a friendly against Australian, scoring inside the first three minutes of the match. A week ago, The Sun, carrying reports from Switzerland suggested that Manchester United had been in contact with Embolo’s agent in a bid to sign the teenager.

FC Basel had already turned down a bid of £21 million for the player from VfL Wolfsburg in January, so it is clear that they are looking for a big fee for Embolo, either that or they intend to keep him into the new season. Embolo had also been linked to RB Leipzig as well as Tottenham and Borussia Mönchengladbach. The 19-year-old seems to have caught the eye of Mourinho, who previously brought Mohamed Salah from Basel in January 2014. Embolo is currently with the Swiss national team in France for Euro 2016 where he has made two appearances already; coming on as a substitute in the 1-0 victory over Albania and another substitute appearance in the 1-1 draw with Romania. Embolo may not be a big name in the world of football, but that does not mean the player does not have the talent, will and determination to become a big name.

At 19, he has a long way to go in the game and could become a big star in the coming years. Embolo is described as ‘a powerful and quick striker who is quick to win over the hearts of the fans’. Swiss team-mate and captain Marco Streller, speaking about Embolo, stated:

“My heart cheers when I see him playing.”

United are currently attempting to sign Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who is a free agent this summer, with reports suggesting a medical will happen after Euro 2016, which is described as a formality to complete the deal. However, with the Swedish international being named in the countries 35-man Olympic football team squad, he could miss pre-season and the first few matches of the season, should he end up signing for Manchester United. United still have Wayne Rooney, despite the fact he is now playing a deeper midfield role, but the likes of Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial also remain at the club and the arrival of Ibrahimovic and Embolo could limit the playing time of all four forwards, but would give United strength in-depth, especially adding the likes of Memphis Depay, Adnan Januzaj, Jesse Lingard and Andreas Pereira who are also attacking players.

The Sun also state that Stoke City are challenging for the 19-year-old this summer, seeing him as the perfect player to link up with Swiss team-mate Xherdan Shaqiri, which personally would not be the best decision for the player. Mourinho feels that as he has a relationship with Basel, that could put him in the driving seat for the signature of the 19-year-old. The Sun go into details about the wages Embolo could earn at Manchester United, stating that he could be on £4 million per year – £76,000 per week. Reports from talkSPORT the wage apparently offered is almost double what RB Leipzig are reportedly offering, but also that the players mother has yet to be convinced that England is the place her son should be heading to this summer. Last season, Embolo made 35 appearances for Basel, scoring 12 goals, also representing Switzerland seven times so far, scoring once. Embolo has played for Basel for three seasons, making 86 appearances in all competitions, scoring 30 goals – meaning he has scored a goal every three matches, on average.


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