JOSE MOURINHO has reportedly confirmed his interest in signing a new central midfielder in the summer with Michael Carrick expected to retire.
The Manchester United boss wants to raid his former club Real Madrid, according to reports.
The Daily Express report that Mourinho is interested in both Toni Kroos and Luka Modric – both targets for the club in the past.
Mourinho will be left short in midfield this summer, with Marouane Fellani linked with an Old Trafford exit and Carrick expected to retire.
He said: “We need to sign a midfield player because we are going to lose Michael Carrick.
“Of course, we need balance in the team. I told you that one or two months ago when we were speaking about the market.
“When some of you keep saying that we are going to buy that striker, that winger, that left winger, that right winger, I told you two months ago.”
“You can accuse me of many, many things, but you cannot say that I lied to you. When I don’t want to say things, I don’t say (them). But I don’t take you in other directions.
“When I told you a couple of months ago that we don’t want to sign any striker or any winger and, yes, we are looking, and we are going to try to sign a midfield player, I told you that two months ago.”
Mourinho also added that the emergence of Scott McTominay in his matchday squads is proof that there are avenues to the first team for youth players at United.
“If, for you, promotion is that they train regularly with us, they have been promoted for a long time,” Mourinho said when asked about the likes of Tahith Chong and Angel Gomes.
“Scott McTominay didn’t arrive here from the moon. Before he came to the first-team he trained with us many times last season.
“He came to us in pre-season and then we realised that with Andreas Pereira going to Valencia, we decided not to buy another player because we had Scott McTominay ready to step up.
“If that’s the concept of promotion, the kids are promoted all the time. Maybe tomorrow I will have one of the kids on the bench.”