In Focus: Man United finally look set to complete Ivan Perisic deal

According to reports in the Sunday Mirror, Manchester United look to be closing in on a £48m deal to finally sign Inter Milan winger Ivan Perisic, who could be a target for Barcelona if they fail to land Liverpool’s Philippe Coutinho.

What’s the word, then?

Well, the Sunday Mirror says that Red Devils executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward is trying to give manager Jose Mourinho his perfect transfer window by bringing Perisic to Old Trafford.

United have been heavily linked with a move for the Croatia international throughout the summer and the Sunday Mirror says that Woodward has reopened talks with the player’s agent Fali Ramadani in a bid to resurrect a deal which looked to be dead when Inter boss Luciano Spalletti said the 28-year-old was going nowhere.

However, the report adds that Woodward is now close to meeting the Serie A giants’ £48m price tag for the versatile attacker as he looks to secure the fourth target – they have already got Victor Lindelof, Romelu Lukaku and Nemanja Matic – that Mourinho wanted from the current window.

How did Perisic do last season?

The Croatian, who is usually deployed on the left wing but can play on the opposite flank, as a central attacking midfielder, secondary striker or even as a wing-back, was a key man for Inter going forward last term.

The 28-year-old scored 11 goals and provided a further 12 assists in 42 appearances in all competitions for the Serie A giants as they recovered from a poor start to the campaign to finish seventh.

Would he be a good signing for United?

He certainly would be.

The Red Devils started with a 3-5-2 formation in the defeat to Real Madrid and it is a system that could be used more frequently during the campaign.

Lingard started at left wing-back then but he struggled to impress, and the likes of Anthony Martial are probably seen as too attacking to fill the role.

Perisic would be the ideal candidate to do exactly that after showing his defensive abilities by making 35 interceptions, 28 clearances and winning 55 aerial duels in 36 Serie A appearances last term, and that is probably why Mourinho is so desperate to bring him to Old Trafford this summer.

Of course, he can also play in a variety of other attacking positions and that will also appeal to the Portuguese boss.