• United make Lindelof first close-season signing

    New Manchester United signing Victor Lindelof New Manchester United signing Victor Lindelof

    Manchester United have completed the signing of defender Victor Lindelof from Benfica for a reported initial fee of €35-million.

    Lindelof, 22, has signed a four-year contract at Old Trafford, with the option of an additional year, and the move could eventually reach a value of €45m if performance-related add-ons are activated.

    The centre-back underwent a medical with United on Wednesday and the Premier League club finalised the deal promptly, meaning Lindelof can prepare to make his debut on United’s summer tour of the USA next month.

    “I am thrilled to be joining Manchester United. I have enjoyed my time at Benfica enormously and I have learned a lot there,” the Sweden international said.

    “But I’m looking forward to playing in the Premier League at Old Trafford and for Jose Mourinho. I’m keen to get started and make my contribution to the team’s efforts to win more trophies.”

    Lindelof becomes Jose Mourinho’s first signing ahead of the 2017-18 season as United look to mount a title challenge.

    “Victor is a very talented young player, who has a great future ahead of him at United,” Mourinho said. “Our season last year showed us that we need options and quality to add depth to the squad and Victor is the first to join us this summer.

    “I know that our fantastic group of players will welcome him as one of us.”

    Lindelof joined Benfica from Vasteras SK in 2012, initially representing the B team before making his first-team debut in October 2013.

    He became a regular from midway through the 2015-16 season, before playing 32 of 34 Primeira Liga matches in 2016-17 as Benfica won a fourth consecutive Portuguese title.

    His senior Sweden debut arrived in March of last year,  and Lindelof went on to represent the country at Euro 2016, starting all three matches.

    Lindelof, who was first linked with United midway through last season, will compete with the likes of Eric Bailly, Daley Blind, Phil Jones, Marcos Rojo and Chris Smalling for a starting spot in defence.

    He becomes the most expensive defender in United history, outstripping the £29.1m paid to Leeds United for Rio Ferdinand in 2002.

    United are also said to be keen on a move for Real Madrid striker Alvaro Morata, with a host of other high-profile targets being linked with transfers.

    Mourinho won the EFL Cup and Europa League in his first season, ensuring qualification for the Champions League, but his debut campaign was marred by poor Premier League form, with United finishing in sixth position.

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