RED DEVILS RED FACED OVER DE LIGT DECISION
This is a doozy. Manchester United could have snapped up Matthijs De Ligt last year for a lot less than the current going rate. But, according to The Mirror, the club decided against signing the world’s most in-demand defender – or indeed any defender – because they thought he would be too fat.
In the context of the current physical state of the United squad, this is just delicious. The story goes that United scout Marcel Bout scouted De Ligt extensively and gave him a glowing recommendation. But Bout also reported that De Ligt’s father was ‘significantly overweight’ and the presumption was that the centre-back would eventually go the same way.
If that was to have happened, he’d have been in bloody good company at Old Trafford this season.
Luke Shaw has been voted Man United's player of the year. This was him vs Huddersfield. Says everything about their season pic.twitter.com/gAOpPG8dJM
— Taintless Red (@TaintlessRed) May 9, 2019
UNITED TO MOVE FOR MAGUIRE
So, a year on from that magnificent call, United are still left looking for a centre-back. They will probably go back for Harry Maguire.
They won’t be alone, though. The Sun reckons the rest of the top six, with the exception of Liverpool, are all queueing up for the England defender.
Apparently, Leicester won’t sell for less than £60million, which still sounds like a good deal.
United could make half of that back by selling Eric Bailly. The Red Devils are open to selling the 25-year-old as long as they recoup the £30million they spent on signing the Ivorian from Villarreal in 2016.
A few reports have suggested Arsenal are in pole position for Bailly, who isn’t likely to bring any serenity or security to the Gunners’ rearguard, but it’d be great fun to watch.
Bailly could replace Shkodran Mustafi, with Tuttosport suggesting that former Arsenal chief-executive Ivan Gazidis, who clearly wasn’t paying attention, wants to take the German to AC Milan.
AND THE REST
Jadon Sancho will stay at Borussia Dortmund this summer… Eden Hazard is on the verge of agreeing personal terms with Real Madrid… Arsenal are one of the clubs keen on singing Real Madrid midfielder Marcos Llorente… Tottenham will move for midfielder Luca Connell when Bolton go into administration… Joe Hart is set to leave Burnley but Peter Crouch will probably stay… West Ham will sell six fringe players, including Lucas Perez and Reece Oxford.