Manchester United are expected to bring in a new number nine over the summer, with Tottenham’s Harry Kane and Napoli top scorer Victor Osimhen among the names in the mix
Former Manchester United star Rio Ferdinand has warned his old club a move for Victor Osimhen could carry a risk for the club, while also sharing his thoughts on the Harry Kane situation.
Osimhen and Kane are among the big-name strikers being linked with an Old Trafford switch, having both scored more than 20 goals in their respective leagues this term. However, while the Nigerian will be in line for Champions League football next term after leading Napoli to the Scudetto, England captain Kane has missed out thanks to Tottenham’s late-season slump.
Kane is about to enter the final year of his Spurs deal, suggesting a move could be secured, Ferdinand recognises the frontman comes with far more Premier League experience, but also recognises the challenge of United being forced to deal with Tottenham chairman Daniel Levy at the negotiating table and feels his old club shouldn’t pay over the odds.
“A number nine is the obvious area that Man Utd need to sort out, we need to get a number in the building,’ Ferdinand said on his Five YouTube channel. ‘There are two names that keep coming up – Osimhen from Napoli and Harry Kane. Ultimately, it is down to Kane and (Tottenham chairman) Daniel Levy.
“If they both say ‘yes, we want to make it happen’, I think Man Utd get it done. The numbers can’t be ridiculous, Levy’s got to be realistic. They’ve got blood, sweat, tears, records, goals, the lot out of Harry Kane.
“Let the guy do what he needs to do now, man. Let him go on and try to compete for Champions Leagues, for championships, for cup competitions.”
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Kane has scored 28 Premier League goals this season, second only to Erling Haaland. However, Spurs are in danger of missing out on European football, while United – despite being some way behind the champions – are at least now assured of a top four finish.
“If he came to Man Utd, he might not even be competing for a title. It might take another year or two,” Ferdinand continued. “But they’re closer than where Spurs are, that’s the point.”
Osimhen hasn’t quite matched Kane’s goal tally, hitting 23 in Serie A this season. The tally is still higher than any other player in the Italian top tier has managed, but Ferdinand still has reservations over the former Lille man’s ability to repeat the trick in England.
“Osimhen is a different kettle of fish,” the pundit said. “He’s 24, he’s scored goals in France and now in Italy. Won the league (in Italy) and knows how to win leagues.
“He’s been a No.9 at a dominant team in the football league. Is that transferable to the Premier League? No one knows that. That’s the chance United would have to take on him.
“That’s the only risk I see. He doesn’t know the league – that’s it. Ability wise and profile, goalscoring, he ticks every box, but there is an unknown factor in does he know how to play in the Premier League? Can he adapt to the Premier League?
“But I wouldn’t see that as a big risk. I’d take either of those two and I’d be happy but the one thing with Kane, he guarantees you 20 or 25 goals a season. There’s no doubt in your mind he gets that when he comes to Man Utd.”