Pundit: Varane should have a Dias-like impact at Man United

Lewis Oldham
Varane F365
Raphael Varane

Manchester United will have a “fantastic defence” if Raphael Varane can settle in as quickly as Ruben Dias did for Manchester City, according to Ray Parlour.

Dias joined Man City last summer for around £61m from Benfica. He formed a strong partnership with John Stones as he enjoyed a phenomenal debut season in England.

The defender won the Premier League Player of the Year award as City reclaimed the league title.

Five things Varane might have spotted from Man Utd study

Real Madrid centre-back Varane is close to securing a move to Man United. The clubs have “reached an agreement” over a £42m deal for the defender. 

Parlour has heaped praise on the Frenchman during an interview with talkSPORT. He believes that the “excellent” defender can form an impressive partnership with Harry Maguire:

“Man City were so good defensively last year. That’s what they really improved on.

“Dias came in and you never really know what sort of situation you’re going to have with a player whether he settles or not.

“But he settled so well in the Premier League and Stones got better alongside him.

“So if Varane can be very similar to how Dias settled in to the Premier League then they’ve got a fantastic defence.

“Most Manchester United fans will be very excited about Varane coming in. They’ve always looked for someone alongside Maguire.

“If they can get someone of his experience, 79 caps for France, he’s been there and done it. He’s played in big, big games. He’s a World Cup winner. It’s an excellent signing.

“Ole Gunnar Solskjaer surely can’t complain that he hasn’t been backed. He’s got Jadon Sancho and now Varane. It puts a little bit more pressure on him as a manager.

“If I look at some of the back fours of the top teams in the Premier League, Man City have got a great back four, Liverpool’s back four is superb.

“That was the big improvement for Man City last year, how Stones and Dias really played well together. They had a really good understanding.

“If Manchester United can get that right as well because Maguire doesn’t miss many games, he had the injury towards the end of last season, but he played every single game before that.

“So if you can put him and Varane together, I’m sure they’d be working on a good partnership.

“It certainly gives Manchester United a massive upgrade from what they’ve had there before.”