Manchester United

Manchester United

Premier League • England

Ideal Man Utd striker signing under threat as Portuguese goalscorer urged to replace La Liga icon

Goncalo Ramos and Joao Felix

Manchester United could face serious competition for Goncalo Ramos after the Portuguese ace was told to join one of Spain’s most illustrious clubs.

Ramos has been in fantastic form for Benfica this season, netting 14 goals in 21 appearances. This saw him gain a spot in Fernando Santos’ Portugal squad for the Qatar World Cup.

Ramos didn’t play a massive role in Portugal’s group matches. He was behind Cristiano Ronaldo in the striker pecking order, as expected, and had to rely on late substitutions for game time.

However, Santos raised eyebrows when selecting his team for the round of 16 clash against Switzerland. He left Ronaldo on the bench and went with 21-year-old Ramos as his main forward.

This was the Benfica man’s first start in international football, and he did not disappoint. Ramos hit a stunning hat-trick as Portugal thrashed Switzerland 6-1 to book their place in the quarter-finals.

Ramos smashed into the roof of the net on his left foot to give Portugal the lead in the 17th minute. After being joined on the scoresheet by veteran defender Pepe, Ramos secured his brace in the second half by flicking a Diogo Dalot cross past Swiss goalkeeper Yann Sommer at the near post.

Dortmund left-back Raphael Guerreiro gave the Euro 2016 winners a four-goal cushion soon afterwards, only for Manuel Akanji to net a Switzerland consolation.

Then, though, it was Ramos’ time to make himself the first hat-trick scorer at the 2022 World Cup. Joao Felix sent him through on goal and he made no mistake when dinking the ball past Sommer and into the net.

Rafael Leao made it 6-1 to Portugal in stoppage time as they set up a last-eight clash against Morocco.

Benfica ace looks like perfect fit for Man Utd attack

Man Utd have been keen on Ramos for some time. But his incredible performance at the World Cup will have shown Red Devils chiefs why he is the perfect man to replace Ronaldo at Old Trafford.

While Benfica would have previously sold the attacker for £38.9m (€45m), they have now put up the price. Man Utd will have to spend a whopping £85m to land Ramos in the new year.

That is similar to what Liverpool had to pay to capture Darwin Nunez from Benfica in the summer.

However, Man Utd are at risk of losing out when it comes to Ramos. His former youth coach at Benfica, Joao Nuno Fonseca, has urged Real Madrid to get involved in the transfer chase.

Fonseca reckons Ramos would work well with La Liga great Karim Benzema up front, before eventually ‘taking the baton’ from the Ballon d’Or winner.

Real Madrid told to rival Man Utd for Goncalo Ramos

“I would see Ramos well at Real Madrid,” Fonseca said (via Goal’s live transfer blog, 08/12, at 08:30). “For me, he can complement Benzema and in the future, I would like him to take the baton.

“He has become a modern nine, but he is a player who tactically gives the coach many options, because he was born as an attacking midfielder.”

Man Utd have been more heavily linked with Ramos than Carlo Ancelotti’s side. But there is a small chance these comments could see Real join the pursuit.

Whichever club ends up landing Ramos, they will be getting a huge talent. He is a deadly finisher who also possesses movement which can trouble the best of defenders.

It will be interesting to see how Portugal line up against Morocco. Ronaldo is arguably their greatest ever player, but Ramos deserves to start up front instead following his round of 16 heroics.

Meanwhile, Man Utd have reportedly renewed their interest in a Sevilla player following his displays at the World Cup.