By Andy Hyslop
- Eric Bailly set to have medical on Tuesday afternoon
- Expected to be a Manchester United player by Friday
- Making him Jose Mourinho’s first signing
On Saturday we brought you the news that Manchester United were closing in on the signing of Villarreal defender Eric Bailly.
It is now our understood that the 22 year-old Ivory Coast International is in Manchester to complete the deal and will undergo a medical on Tuesday afternoon.
His representatives are confident the deal will be completed by Friday.
The transfer will be Jose Mourinho’s first as United manager and Bailly is regarded as one of the best up and coming defenders in Spain.
Villarreal haven’t stood in the way of the move because the fee United will pay them will see the club make a profit even after they have payed a sell-clause to Espanyol.
Manchester United aren’t the club who have shown an interest in the player. With Bayern Munich, Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain, Arsenal and Manchester City all having watched him over the last two years.
Although Bailly is still raw, he is physical, fast and powerful. He has been uncompromising in challenges and has been prone to the odd mistake when bringing the ball out of defence.
But United and Mourinho see enough potential to justify risking the outlay on the player.
He may be Mourinho’s first Manchester United signing but there is no doubt that he won’t be the last. Zlatan Ibrahimović is also expected to confirm his move to United in the weeks.
While there are also reports emerging that Mourinho may be interested in bringing Nemanja Matic in from former side Chelsea.
With the potential signing of Bailly there will be a number of defensive players in the United squad who will have to fight for their futures at the club under Mourinho.