Inter Milan are ready to make their first formal bid for Romelu Lukaku – after Manchester United named a £80m asking price.
United are understood to have held showdown talks with Lukaku on Wednesday and informed the Belgian striker he will be allowed to leave for the right price.
According to The Times, United have now set their asking price at around £80m and Inter are expected to pull the trigger with a formal approach next week.
Inter have been linked with Lukaku for a number of weeks and view him as a top target as they look to close the gap on Juventus at the top of the Serie A table.
Manager Luciano Spalletti has officially been sacked by the San Siro club with Antonio Conte expected to be unveiled as new boss on Friday morning.
The former Chelsea boss has Lukaku at the top of his shortlist, understood to be viewed as a replacement for Mauro Icardi.
Reports in Italy suggest Conte’s one demand after taking the job was for Icardi, once linked to Manchester United, to be shipped out.
The Argentinian striker has experienced a tough year and was stripped of the captaincy following a row with club bosses before being brought back into the fold.
Back in Manchester, Lukaku has fallen behind Marcus Rashford in the pecking order to be the central striker in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s system at Old Trafford.
But they want to recoup the majority of the fee they paid to Everton, with an initial £75m fee reportedly boosted by £15m worth of add-ons since the deal went through.
Lukaku scored 12 goals in the Premier League last season and is now one of a number of big names stars set to be involved in Solskjaer’s summer clearout.