Manchester United will have to pay staggering sum to sign top defensive target

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Manchester United will be forced to pay £50m for Victor Lindelof if they want to prise him away from Benfica this summer.

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The towering Swedish defender was a prime target for Jose Mourinho during the January transfer window, before finally seeing a move break down at the eleventh hour.

But with speculation now rife over a renewned bid from United during the close season, new details have emerged which could threaten any potential deal.

The Daily Express claims that the Portuguese giants have paid to take Lindelof’s £34.5m release clause out of his contract, and will now demand around £50m for the player.

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Mourinho and Co came close to securing the 22-year-old in January, but instead opted to keep Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo together until the end of the campaign in light of their improved form.

The Red Devils have embarked upon a 15-game unbeaten run in the Premier League, closing the gap on the teams above them in the league.

However, this will not deter the Portuguese from looking to strengthen his squad in the summer. It remains to be seen if Lindelof, also tracked by Juventus, will be a prominent figure on his list but a centre-back is thought to be a priority.

The Swedish international has made 18 league starts for second-placed Benfica.

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