Manchester United are moving closer to reaching an agreement with Atalanta for young Danish striker Rasmus Hojlund, Sky Sports News understands.
The two clubs have been negotiating a compromise on a transfer fee, with Atalanta valuing the player at €70m (£60.1m) plus performance-related bonuses.
While a gap in valuation remains, United are hopeful a deal can be finalized well before the new season starts. They do have other striker targets should an agreement for Hojlund not materialize.
Hojlund was left out of Atalanta’s preseason friendly squad on Saturday, while the Italian club signed striker El Bilal Toure from Almeria. This could signal Atalanta are preparing for Hojlund’s potential departure.
There are no issues with personal terms between United and the player. However, United face competition from PSG, who bid €50m (£43m) for Hojlund earlier this week.
United remain encouraged by Hojlund’s desire to move to Old Trafford and will not be influenced by interest from other clubs.
They have shown willingness to walk away from deals that exceed their valuation, like with Mason Mount and Andre Onana.
Due to Financial Fair Play limits and a determination to stick to their price points, United have been reluctant to go over €60m packages this summer. But they maintain a good relationship with Atalanta from previous negotiations.
Both clubs are moving towards a compromise fee. United believe Hojlund has elite potential that could be unlocked under Erik ten Hag’s coaching.
There is an understanding Rashford may need to play centrally initially while Hojlund gains experience.
United have parallel discussions underway for Frankfurt’s Randal Kolo Muani as an alternative. They have also looked closely at Ajax’s Mohammed Kudus and at least one other target, not wanting to be left short up front.
PSG see Tottenham’s Harry Kane as a potential marquee signing if he becomes available. Their bid for Hojlund indicates their desire to add a top striker this summer.
After a blunt attacking display in a 2-0 friendly loss to Real Madrid, Ten Hag emphasized the need for a new striker at United. He feels the team lacks composed one-on-one finishers and needs reinforcements to take chances.