Manchester United have been encouraged in securing the services of Romelu Lukaku after his current employers Everton's fear that their star striker will make a switch to Old Trafford in the summer. He has been one of the star players in the Premier League this season and is the third top scorer with 18 goals.

The 22-year-old has already admitted that he is looking for an exit after the end of the season and has also expressed his desire to play in the Champions League next season. According to the Mirror, the striker will sign for the Red Devils even if they fail to finish in the top four and qualify for the Europe's elite club competition.

United's current manager Louis van Gaal has one year left on his contract at Old Trafford. However, the Dutchman's future at the club beyond this season remains uncertain and Jose Mourinho is reportedly expected to replace him in the summer.

With the former Real Madrid manager in line to take the Old Trafford job, Lukaku's chance of getting signed for United has only improved. Everton believe the 20-time English champions are in pole position for his signature and they fear the ex-Chelsea man will join them, even if they do not qualify for next season' Champions League.

The Belgium international joined the Merseyside club in 2013 on loan from Chelsea and made his move permanent a year later, after Mourinho sold him to the Toffees for £28m ($39.8m). Despite this, there is no friction between the pair and the striker admitted that he is open to working under the Portuguese tactician again.

Everton manager Roberto Martinez will take his men to Old Trafford as his side take on United in the Premier League clash on 3 April. During the pre-match press conference, the Spaniard was asked about the reports linking Lukaku to the Red Devils.

He said: "It's normal. Every time we lose players to internationals we get attracted to what the players [say] and their family members, fans, people affiliated to them....

"There is always speculation because he is performing well on the pitch. People want to have a say about that. It is not unsettling at all. That should be the aspiration of everyone, as soon as you can — aspire to be in the best competitions."