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Manchester United ‘may struggle to convince Christopher Nkunku to join without Champions League’


Manchester United ‘could struggle to convince £54m-rated Christopher Nkunku to join them without Champions League football’, with rivals Arsenal and Inter Milan also plotting a summer move for the in-form Leipzig star

  • Christopher Nkunku has scored 30 goals in all competitions so far this season 
  • Manchester United are interested in the attacker, alongside Inter and Arsenal 
  • But United could struggle to sign him if they miss out on the Champions League 
  • That is because any finish below the top four would drastically cut their budget 

Manchester United face a fight to convince RB Leipzig star Christopher Nkunku to join them this summer if they miss out on the Champions League, according to reports – with a host of other elite clubs interested in the £54m attacker. 

Nkunku has enjoyed a superb breakout season in the Bundesliga after previously impressing with the team, and United, who are set to begin their rebuild under the inbound Erik ten Hag, have been keeping close tabs on him.

It is likely that he will move on in the next transfer window, too, and Sport Bild in Germany have claimed that United are interested but may struggle to tie him down. 

Manchester United may struggle to sign Christopher Nkunku without the Champions League

Manchester United may struggle to sign Christopher Nkunku without the Champions League

That is because a lack of action at the top table in Europe may mean they fall short of reaching Leipzig’s hefty valuation of their prized asset.

If United do miss out on the Champions League, their budget is set to be slashed drastically – and this tightening of the belt could see them miss out on Nkunku. 

The same publication have also pointed out the uncertainty around the managerial role at Old Trafford, and what style of play their new manager will implement.

Attacker Nkunku is enjoying a breakout season and his club reportedly value him at £54million

Attacker Nkunku is enjoying a breakout season and his club reportedly value him at £54million

Ralf Rangnick, the club’s current interim coach, will step into an advisory role at the end of the campaign, and it is understood that he has long since admired Nkunku.

Indeed, Rangnick helped lure the talisman from PSG to Leipzig in 2019, and he was reportedly stunned after discovering United’s scouts were not monitoring him.

This off-field chaos may allow Nkunku’s other potential suitors to pounce.

It is said Inter Milan and Arsenal are both also interested, with the latter having kept tabs on the player ‘for years’. 

Ralf Rangnick has worked with Nkunku in the past and he may be keen to see him join United

Ralf Rangnick has worked with Nkunku in the past and he may be keen to see him join United

They may be tempted to swoop in this summer, but could also face the same conundrum at United if they do not finish in the top four.

As it stands, Nkunku’s contract at his club expires in the summer of 2024, but it is highly likely he will be shipped out for an eye-watering fee before then.

This term, he has scored 30 goals and recorded an impressive 19 assists. 

Nkunku has scored 30 goals this season, including a hat-trick against Manchester City (above)

Nkunku has scored 30 goals this season, including a hat-trick against Manchester City (above)

Notably, he has scored a hat-trick against Manchester City in the Champions League, and also netted against Bayern Munich, PSG and Borussia Dortmund. 

Sportsmail has previously reported that agents have been told by United that failing to make the Champions League could cut their budget to as low as £20m.

Regardless, the club are pressing on with drawing up a list of potential targets.

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