Manchester United have agreed a fee of around £75m with Everton for striker Romelu Lukaku, senior club sources have told the BBC.
The 24-year-old Belgium international scored 25 Premier League goals last season.
United, who have been chasing Lukaku for most of the summer, will not now be pursuing their interest in Real Madrid’s Alvaro Morata.
Everton sources say no deal or agreement has been reached.
The move for Lukaku is not connected to talks aimed at taking United forward Wayne Rooney to Everton.
Jose Mourinho’s side are hopeful of concluding a deal in time for Lukaku to join the squad before they depart for a pre-season tour to the United States on Sunday.
The striker was on a list of forward options Mourinho gave to executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward before the end of last season.
It had been thought Lukaku would return to his former club Chelsea, who he joined from Anderlecht in 2011.
The striker was sold to Everton for £28m by Mourinho during the Portuguese manager’s second spell in charge of Chelsea in 2014.
Lukaku is a client of agent Mino Raiola, who also looks after Paul Pogba, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Henrikh Mkhitaryan – three players all signed by United last summer.
The Belgian turned down the most lucrative contract offer in Everton’s history in March and later said: “I don’t want to stay at the same level. I want to improve and I know where I want to do that.”
Lukaku in stats
- With a double against Hull City in March, Romelu Lukaku became the first Everton player since Gary Lineker in 1985-86 to hit 20 league goals in a season.
- Lukaku is also only the fourth player to score more than 80 goals in the Premier League before turning 24 (also Michael Owen, Robbie Fowler and Wayne Rooney).
- He has also scored more goals than any other Everton player in Premier League history (68).
- Lukaku is one of only three players to have scored more than 10 goals in each of the last five Premier League seasons (alongside Giroud and Aguero).
Mourinho & Lukaku – in quotes
Lukaku on Mourinho in December 2015:
“Everyone says it is Mourinho’s fault but it is not his fault because I made the decision [to leave Chelsea]. I went to his office to ask if I could go.
“I signed the deal with Everton at 11 o’clock and the first text message I got on my old BlackBerry was from Mourinho saying: ‘Good luck, do your best and I will see you next season.’ He was the first. Nobody knows that and that is why for me he gets immense respect.”
Mourinho on Lukaku expressing surprise he was released by Chelsea to join Everton on loan in 2013:
“Romelu likes to speak. He’s a young boy who likes to speak. But the only thing he didn’t say is why he went to Everton on loan. That’s the only thing he never says. And my last contact with him was to tell him exactly that – ‘why do you never say why you are not here?'”
Mourinho on selling Lukaku to Everton:
“Romelu was always very clear with us with his mentality and his approach was not highly motivated to come to a competitive situation with Chelsea.
“He wanted to play for Chelsea but he clearly wanted to be first-choice striker – but for a club of our dimension it is very difficult to promise to a player. That reduced, immediately, his desire to come to us.
“After that, Everton came in with an important offer. As I always say – because it’s the reality – our club wants to do things really well. We want to always be inside of the rules. Financial Fair Play is something that is always in the thoughts of Chelsea’s board.”
Top five world record transfers
- £89m – Paul Pogba. Juventus to Manchester United, 2016
- £86m – Gareth Bale. Tottenham to Real Madrid, 2013
- £80m – Cristiano Ronaldo. Manchester United to Real Madrid, 2009
- £75.3m – Gonzalo Higuain. Napoli to Juventus, 2016
- £75m – Luis Suarez. Liverpool to Barcelona, 2014
Top five British transfers
- £50m – Fernando Torres. Liverpool to Chelsea, 2011
- £47.5m – John Stones – Everton to Manchester City, 2016
- £44m – Raheem Sterling. Liverpool to Manchester City, 2015
- £37.1m – Juan Mata. Chelsea to Manchester United, 2014
- £35m – Andy Carroll – Newcastle to Liverpool, 2011