Barcelona interested in Manchester United defender Eric Bailly

La Liga heavyweights Barcelona are reportedly weighing up the prospect of signing Eric Bailly from Manchester United in the summer.

According to a report by Daily Star, Eric Bailly is the subject of interest from Barcelona over a possible move in the summer transfer window. The Catalan giants are eyeing the Manchester United defender as the latest Premier League misfit to bolster their squad.

Eric Bailly joined Manchester United from Villarreal in July 2016 and almost immediately became a mainstay at the back for the Red Devils. But injuries have not been kind to the Ivory Coast international, who has fallen down the pecking order of centre-backs as a result.

The 27-year-old is now a bit-part player for Manchester United, with Harry Maguire, Raphael Varane, and Victor Lindelof preferred ahead of him. Bailly has consequently managed just 487 minutes of game-time thus far this term across seven appearances. The player’s precarious situation at Manchester United has caught the attention of Barcelona.

Barcelona might need to enter the market for a centre-back or two in the transfer market. While Gerard Pique’s advancing years will prompt the Blaugrana to sign a top-class defender, Clement Lenglet and Samuel Umtiti’s declining stature could force them to secure the services of another such player. To that end, Andreas Christensen has already been linked with the club.

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That is also where Bailly comes into the picture, with the Ivorian the latest Premier League misfit to have emerged on Barcelona’s radar. The Catalan giants have been successful in resurrecting the careers of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Adama Traore, even though it is still early days for the duo at Camp Nou.

Bailly could be the latest to get back on his feet at Barcelona, although signing him from Manchester United could be tricky for the Blaugrana. While the 27-year-old’s current contract runs out in 2024, the Red Devils have the option of extending his stay by a further year, giving them more leverage in negotiations.

While Manchester United will unlikely stand in Bailly’s way, considering they have been linked with several centre-backs lately, including Manuel Akanji, they will stand firm to have their valuation met. With that in mind, it remains to be seen if Barcelona will be open to paying Manchester United’s asking price for Bailly.

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