Rumours continue to swirl around Manchester United star Wayne Rooney, with the latest reports saying Chinese clubs are willing to pay the England international a stunning £1 million per week. Meanwhile, Inter Milan are reportedly trying to land United transfer target Victor Lindelof.
According to The Sun (h/t the Daily Express' Jack Otway), China's top clubs are willing to show their financial might in a deal for Rooney, offering him an enormous salary to leave Old Trafford at the end of the season.
The 31-year-old hasn't been a regular starter for the club this season, and he's expected to move on to the next chapter of his career at the end of this season, with United manager Jose Mourinho sanctioning a sale.
Rooney still has value as a depth option and someone who can come off the bench to score goals, something he showed during the weekend, when he became the Red Devils' all-time top scorer by equalising against Stoke City, per Bleacher Report UK:
But while that goal silenced his critics and the transfer rumour mill momentarily, it likely didn't change the way Mourinho sees the club legend. Rooney has been a loyal, productive player for years, but his prime is clearly behind him, and he's no longer an integral part of the squad.
With more attacking reinforcements expected during the summer and the rise of youngsters Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford, there will be even less space in the team for Rooney next season. A split seems inevitable, especially now that he has broken the club record.
Rob Dawson of the Manchester Evening News thinks he's been a fantastic player for the club:
Rooney will have options, and while he's perhaps not likely to move to a different Premier League club―unless former team Everton are open to a reunion―a transfer to China or Major League Soccer would make sense.
Chinese clubs in particular pay ridiculous money for foreign stars these days, and they could make Rooney the highest-paid player in the world.
Meanwhile, the Daily Star Sunday's Paul Hetherington reports United may have to decide on the transfer of Benfica's Lindelof sooner than expected, as Inter are trying to bring the Swede to Serie A.
The Red Devils were heavily linked with Lindelof throughout January, but the move was pushed to the summer, with most pundits assuming the deal was all but done. The Nerazzurri have emerged as realistic suitors of late, however, backed by the financial might of their Chinese owners, Suning Holdings Group.
Per the report, Mourinho will have to make a decision on Lindelof before the end of the transfer window, although it's unclear whether Inter are trying to land the Sweden international in January or will also defer to the summer.
The 22-year-old has been a crucial part of the Benfica squad this season, and the Portuguese side are naturally unwilling to let him part for a fee well below his buyout clause. Here's a look at some of his highlights:
No player has been linked with United more than Lindelof in January, and it would be a major surprise if the youngster ended up in Italy. Stranger things have happened, however, and if Mourinho does decide not to push for the transfer right now, he could live to regret it.