Man Utd 'line up' South American to replace Ronaldo

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Lautaro Martinez
Lautaro Martinez

Manchester United are now reportedly lining up a South American star as a potential replacement for the recently-departed Cristiano Ronaldo.

The Portuguese forward officially left the Manchester club on Tuesday after agreeing to terminate his contract eight months early following a tumultuous few months.

Read: Where will Ronaldo go next? 5 clubs already linked

With the 37-year-old now gone, Erik ten Hag's squad depth will be called into question as Anthony Martial, who started his career as a left-winger, is now the only recognised senior striker at the club.

This could prove a headache for the Dutchman as the Frenchman has missed the majority of the 2022/23 season so far with injury issues.

While Marcus Rashford has occasionally been used up front, United's reported search for a striker in the most recent transfer window indicated that Ten Hag wants to have more options for the No. 9 role. 

According to a report from Fichajes, the Red Devils have identified a number of potential successors for Ronaldo now that he has moved on, and Inter Milan's Lautaro Martinez is one of the names near the top of the shortlist. 

The Argentine scored 24 times in the 2021/22 season, and has continued in the same rich vein of form in this campaign, with 14 goal contributions in 24 appearances across all competitions for the Nerazzurri.

If he joins the Red Devils, Martinez would become the fourth South American Ten Hag has signed in his short tenure so far at United, after fellow Argentine Lisandro Martinez, and Brazilians Casemiro and Antony. 

Read: Ronaldo breaks silence on Man Utd exit

It is further claimed, though, that United will have a fight on their hands to secure the striker's services as Inter do not want to part ways with the forward, who is currently at the World Cup in Qatar with his national team, in the middle of the current campaign. 

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WATCH: REACTION OUTSIDE OLD TRAFFORD TO CRISTIANO RONALDO'S DEPARTURE