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Ole: Sanchez 'definitely' could play for Utd again

MANCHESTER, England -- Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has admitted Manchester United have been left short up front by the departures of Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez, but he has left the door open for Sanchez to return to Old Trafford.

Lukaku and Sanchez have both signed for Inter Milan -- Lukaku in a permanent £74 million move and Sanchez on a season-long loan.

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United failed in their attempts to sign a replacement for Lukaku -- talks with Juventus pair Paulo Dybala and Mario Mandzukic came to nothing -- and Solskjaer has said he is concerned it has left him light on attacking options.

A forward is likely to be United's priority in next summer's transfer window, but Solskjaer has said Sanchez could also return if he rediscovers his form in Italy.

"We might be one down in the attacking lineup, but we just didn't get the right answers that we wanted to," Solskjaer told a news conference at Carrington on Friday.

"As I said on the way back from tour, we were still looking for one replacement for Romelu if he went. We are one down to be fair, but we just didn't find the right one, we didn't find the answer that we wanted."

Sanchez will spend this season at the San Siro after a miserable 18 months at Old Trafford that have seen the Chile international score just five goals in 45 games.

United are contributing around £6m of the forward's wage over the next 10 months, but with two years still to run on his contract once he returns from Milan, Solskjaer has said Sanchez could yet have a future at the club.

"Yeah, definitely," Solskjaer said, when asked whether Sanchez could play for United again.

"This is a loan for a year. Chris [Smalling]'s deal is a loan for a year. We expect them to be professional and to go and represent United as well. We want them to do well.

"I had a chat with [Sanchez] and for me, if I can't guarantee regular football for him, it's better for the two of us that he goes and plays in Italy and shows what we know he's capable of.

"But I could not guarantee him that here.

"I'm sure we will see Alexis back. We just hope he plays regular football for a year. Then he can find his form."

Limited options up front mean there is pressure on Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and 17-year-old Mason Greenwood to score the goals this season. Solskjaer says he has faith in the trio to step up in the absence of Lukaku and Sanchez and said there are no plans to bolster United's attack despite links with former Tottenham striker Fernando Llorente.

"If I didn't have faith, I would just not have them," Solskjaer said. "We would have signed someone else or kept someone else. We believe in them definitely."

Llorente may not be available in any case -- sources told ESPN FC on Friday that he will join Napoli on a two-year deal.

Former United striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic addressed the club's shortage of strikers this week, saying, "If United need me, I'm here," and Solskjaer responded to the offer on Friday.

"If he was 28 and not 38 [in October], there's a big difference," Solskjaer said.

"Zlatan had a great time here, he's still doing well [at LA Galaxy], it's unfortunate he got his injury here.

"Who knows? He knows my number, he looked at my house [when he was here]. We can speak a native language. If he's serious, I'll always speak to Zlatan."

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