Premier League

Revealed: Man Utd’s three-man shortlist to replace Cristiano Ronaldo

Cameron Smith
Ronaldo, Ten Hag, 2022-23

Manchester United have reportedly drawn up a transfer shortlist of three names as they begin to search for Cristiano Ronaldo’s replacement.

The five-time Ballon d’Or winner left the club by mutual consent before the beginning of the 2022 Qatar World Cup after a brutally honest interview with Piers Morgan was aired, with Ronaldo blasting Man Utd and current head coach Erik ten Hag.

The Portuguese international is now a free agent and is likely to join Al-Nassr in Saudi Arabia in January. However, his departure from Old Trafford leaves the Red Devils fairly light in attacking areas. The injury-prone Anthony Martial is now the only recognised senior striker in the squad, with Marcus Rashford finding form out wide rather than through the middle.

READ: Goncalo Ramos is the perfect Ronaldo replacement for Portugal and Man Utd

As a result, the club are set to dip in the January transfer market in order to sign a new number nine to fill the void left by Ronaldo. ESPN have reported that there are three players that Man Utd are considering purchasing in order to fix their current problem.

Man Utd’s three-man shortlist

Who do Man Utd want to sign to replace Ronaldo?

Player Club Age
Cody Gakpo PSV 23
Goncalo Ramos Benfica 21
Alvaro Morata Atletico Madrid 30

According to ESPN, Man Utd have narrowed their search down to: Cody Gakpo, Goncalo Ramos and Alvaro Morata.

READ: Goncalo Ramos to Man Utd: ‘Ten Hag a fan of Benfica striker’

The former has been heavily linked with a move to Old Trafford, with Ten Hag even suggesting a move is close in his pre-match press conference ahead of their first Premier League game back after the World Cup.

Gakpo netted three goals at the World Cup as the Netherlands reached the quarter-final stage before being knocked out by Argentina. Goncalo Ramos also bagged three goals in Qatar, although his came in one game against Switzerland in the last-16.

Goncalo Ramos scored a World Cup hat-trick in Qatar

Goncalo Ramos scored a World Cup hat-trick in Qatar

He replaced Ronaldo in the Portugal starting XI that day and it’s understood that Man Utd believe he can perform the same role at club level.

Finally, Morata has been linked with a move back to the Premier League. He was close to joining Man Utd back in 2017, but they opted for Romelu Lukaku while the Spaniard joined Chelsea. Five years later he could finally make the switch to the red side of Manchester as a short-term fix with Atleti needing to sell in order to raise funds.

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