Manchester United look set to miss out on Benfica striker Darwin Nunez, with a deal for the Uruguayan to move to bitter rivals Liverpool ‘all but done’, talkSPORT understands.
Nunez has impressed for Benfica this season, scoring 34 goals in 41 appearances in all competitions – including two against Liverpool in the Champions League – making him one of Europe’s most in-demand strikers this summer.
Man United had been closely monitoring the Uruguayan whilst Liverpool got a first-hand look at him during their European Cup quarter-final double header against Benfica in April.
Liverpool have now overtaken United in the race to sign the 22-year-old, with a deal to take the striker to Anfield imminent, according to talkSPORT’s Alex Crook.
“Manchester United would have loved to sign Erling Haaland, but that was never going to happen because he wanted to play Champions League football, and I think it’s a similar story with Darwin Nunez,” Crook said in his transfer round-up with Hawksbee and Jacobs.
“I was in Portugal a few weeks ago and all the local sports papers there were saying Nunez to Man United was a done deal – I never saw it that way because there was always a chance a bigger club in terms of playing in the Champions League would come in for him, and indeed that has happened.
“Liverpool are not too far away now, I’m told. In fact, I’ve had a message that Nunez to Liverpool is ‘all but done’.
“I think he is happy with the terms on offer, it’s just about agreeing how the fee will be paid. I’m told it will be £68million up front with add-ons that will eventually see him become Liverpool’s record signing.
“That’s where the two rival clubs are at, at the moment.
“It will pain Manchester United fans to admit this, but at the moment Liverpool and Jurgen Klopp are a bigger attraction than Man United and Erik ten Hag.”
The news will come as a blow to United who were confident they could lure the player to Old Trafford, but losing out to Liverpool adds insult to injury and the club will seemingly have to look elsewhere for attacking reinforcements.
A deal for Nunez could see Sadio Mane leave the club this summer after making clear his intentions of a departure.
Bayern Munich looks the most likely destination for the Senegalese star and Africa Cup of Nations champion, but the Bundesliga title winners have had their opening two bids rejected by Liverpool.
Mane has 12 months left on his contract and wants to take up a new challenge elsewhere.
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