• 31 July 2022

According to Mirror, Manchester United have slapped a £10 million price tag on out-of-favour central defender Eric Bailly. The Ivory Coast international is said to be open to leaving Old Trafford this summer after falling down the pecking order and is being courted by the likes of AS Roma and Napoli.

Roma manager Jose Mourinho is keen on bringing Bailly to Italy. Notably, the defender was Mourinho’s first signing as Manchester United manager when he joined the club back in 2016.

The 28-year-old has had largely injury-affected six seasons at the club, where he has managed just 70 appearances in the Premier League and 113 across competitions. In the recently-concluded 2021/22 season, he played just seven times. In fact, Bailly has not made more than 15 league appearances in a season since his debut campaign, which saw him play 25 matches in the Premier League. He has, however, won the Carabao Cup and Europa League at Old Trafford.

But the arrivals of the likes of Victor Lindelof, Harry Maguire and Raphael Varane in the past few years have seen him fall down the pecking order and Lisandro Martinez’s signing this summer will further limit his game time. Bailly is thus eager to leave the club this summer with two years remaining on his current contract. Two Serie A clubs are said to be showing interest with both Roma and Napoli in a transfer battle for the defender. Bailly is reportedly open to joining Napoli as well in search of regular playing time, leaving this to be a two-way battle.

Bailly is currently on Manchester United’s pre-season tour to Thailand and Australia and impressed in the first couple of games. But it doesn’t look like he features in new manager Erik ten Hag’s plans going forward. He made a substitute appearance in their latest 2-2 draw against Aston Villa, also picking up a yellow card in the process.

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