Manchester United’s hunt for a striker this summer could branch in many directions. One option, report Austrian newspaper Salzburger Nachtricten, is Red Bull Salzburg striker Patson Daka.
United are reported to be interested in the 22-year-old forward who has 27 club goals this season. Daka can’t stop scoring at international level either.
Daka represents Zambia, and struck twice in a win over Zimbabwe this week, and another two against Algeria.
This followed a goal in his previous African Cup of Nations qualifier against Zimbabwe last year.
Daka now has five goals in his last three international matches.
It means for club and country Daka now has more than 30 goals to his name this season.
However, crucially, Daka’s goals were not enough to help Zambia qualify for the AFCON, with his country finishing third in the group.
Salzburg coach Jesse Marsch was quoted by Zambia News last year: “He is a great lad on and off the pitch, he is hardworking and he is a little fast. It’s a just lot of fun working with him and I hope he continues with this development he has a lot of potential, he is just a fantastic player.”
Daka’s goalscoring is not slowing down and it looks like Salzburg will struggle to hold onto him this summer.
Whether he can have the same type of impact as Erling Haaland upon leaving is a big ask, but he will be available at a fraction of the price of his former teammate this summer.
Daka was understandably devastated that his country failed to qualify for next year’s African Cup of Nations.
He was quoted by Bolla Zambia: “Despite us winning, it’s a very emotional night for us knowing that we could not go to the Africa Cup and it is one thing that we were looking forward to but unfortunately the plan from God and we just have to accepted what has happened.”
Failure to qualify for next year’s tournament actually could help Daka in the short-term, to secure a big move this summer.
The rescheduled tournament is set to take place in January 2022, in the middle of the European season.
When the tournament was shifted to summer in 2019 it was an unpopular decision and has since reverted to January.
With a number of different ways United could go, Daka being set to miss two months of next season, would have been a big reason not to sign him next year. Now, he is available the entire season.
Daka said on his future: “Well, I only concentrate about playing football that’s what I am good at, so whatever speculation that comes I do not really pay attention because I know that my agent is there to do the work so I don’t really pay attention to what the media is saying.”
It’s unclear how high up on United’s list he is after Haaland, but he is certainly an intriguing option. He’s become more viable after this latest international blow, which he himself did everything he could to avoid.