Jose Mourinho wants two more signings as Manchester United prepare for the new Premier League season, but he would not comment on rumours linking the club with a move for Nemanja Matic.
United have paid £75million to sign Romelu Lukaku from Everton and brought in Benfica defender Victor Lindelof for £30.8m plus add-ons, while the club failed with a bid to sign Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata and allowed injured forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic to leave at the end of his contract.
Mourinho, who is open to re-signing Ibrahimovic when he returns to full fitness, believes his squad needs more additions to cope with returning to the Champions League, especially as he has a number of long-term absentees.
“I would not like to be in [chief executive] Ed Woodward’s position negotiating because everything is really difficult,” Mourinho told reporters ahead of United’s first pre-season friendly against MLS side LA Galaxy.
“So maybe we don’t get two, we get one, but we need one more to give us more options. We have players that belong to the squad but cannot play for next few months, [Marcos] Rojo, Ashley Young, Luke Shaw, if Zlatan stays.
“We need two more players I would say, at least one, but I don’t want to say Matic or any other name because I don’t think it’s correct.”
Mourinho on his new signings: “They did very well to deserve to come to a giant like United. It looks like they’ll be here for a long time.” pic.twitter.com/3pMGJOIRSb
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 14, 2017
Premier League champions Chelsea are reportedly holding on to Serbia international Matic until they complete the signing of Monaco midfielder Tiemoue Bakayoko, which is believed to be close.
Bakayoko’s impending arrival at Stamford Bridge would likely free up Matic – who has reportedly been cleared to miss the Blues’ pre-season tour, along with Diego Costa – to reunite with former Chelsea boss Mourinho, but the Portuguese opted not to confirm his interest in the 28-year-old.
“I can’t say any word about a player who is a Chelsea player,” Mourinho said. “It’s the same with Morata, we have to respect the player, the club, the owner, the manager.
“I don’t want to be disrespectful, we don’t have our door closed, we are not happy with just Lukaku and Lindelof. We need more, we wanted four, so I would say 50 per cent of the job is done, but I don’t want to say that because everything is so difficult.
“Every club in the Premier League is powerful, has money to buy, to refuse to sell, and people don’t focus on the power to keep the players and refuse to sell.
“I think the market is so strange, the prices are absolutely out of context, so the clubs without the power to sell, refuse to sell, are one step ahead and there are many clubs in the Premier League who refuse to sell their best players and that is fantastic and makes the competition so hard.”
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