Man Utd have reportedly sent scouts to keep an eye on Roma midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini, as they could have an issue with a key contract renewal.
Jose Mourinho secured a crucial signing this past summer, bringing former Chelsea ace Nemanja Matic to Old Trafford to fill an important role in midfield.
However, that doesn’t seem to be the end of his work in that department, as The Express report, via Football Italia, that he is eyeing Pellegrini as a possible long-term solution, while the 21-year-old’s teammate Radja Nainggolan is also on their radar.
Further, it’s noted that if Mourinho was keen to make the Italian a Man Utd player, he would have to persuade the club to splash out £22m on him in order to meet his release clause.
Pellegrini impressed during a loan spell with Sassuolo last season, scoring eight goals and providing eight assists in 34 appearances, while he’s battling to now make his mark with the Giallorossi. However, it looks as though he has already attracted interest from elsewhere.
Meanwhile, a factor that could be pushing Mourinho into making the decision is the fact that Marouane Fellaini has yet to sign a contract renewal.
The 29-year-old’s current deal expires at the end of the season, and as noted in the Express report, there are fears that there may be too big a gap between what he’s demanding and what United are willing to offer him.
An Old Trafford source said: “There is a fear that Marouane will only stay here with a major pay increase. He is on good money already, but feels he has a worth. They are in a difficult spot with him out of contract next summer.
“The club already took out their 12-month option to extend his deal back in January, so it’s proving difficult.
“He wants to stay by all accounts, but has seen the club hand big money in recent seasons to new arrivals.”
That really would complicate matters and speed up the pursuit of Pellegrini or another target, and so it remains to be seen whether or not Fellaini is with Mourinho beyond this season.