Jose Mourinho wants to sign £40m-rated midfielder after Mkhitaryan sale: report

Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho will reportedly look to finalise an agreement for Inter Milan Joao Mario once the Serie A giants are permitted to pursue the services of Henrikh Mkhitaryan in a separate deal.

According to The Sun, Mkhitaryan is likely to be shown the Old Trafford exit door in January following his failure to maintain his consistency through the campaign. The Armenia international earned his first league start in nearly two months versus Southampton, but his performance was below-par as he struggled to send accurate crosses towards the opposition goal.

As a result, the 28-year-old could be permitted to seal a move to the Serie A with the Nerazzurri, and United are aiming to pounce thereafter with an agreement for Mario. The Portugal international is unhappy with his reduced gametime under Luciano Spalletti, and though he has yet to submit a transfer request, a fee of around £40m is said to be sufficient to do business.

The Euro 2016 winner is eyed as a direct replacement for Michael Carrick, who is expected to hang up his boots in the summer, whilst he could be used further up the field in an attacking midfield role, where he flourished during his time at Sporting Lisbon.

Jose Mourinho’s side endured a poor end to 2017 with three successive draws in the English top-flight, and the club’s faithful will hope for a better start to the New Year starting, with the game against Everton at Goodison Park.

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