Sevilla considering Eric Bailly move to bolster their defence


La Liga side Sevilla are considering a shock bid for Manchester United defender Eric Bailly, as Pablo Machin looks to strengthen his back line during the January transfer window.

Ivory Coast international Bailly is reported to be unhappy at the recent departure of Jose Mourinho from the club, and is considering his future in England, after starting just one game under new manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

According to Spanish newspaper Mundo Deportivo, Bailly is open to a return to Spain – where he enjoyed spells at Espanyol between 2014-15 and Villarreal between 2015-16 – before making the move to Old Trafford.

Solskjaer has not commented on the speculation surrounding Bailly, who he will be without for two games after his red card against Bournemouth, but he is not likely to be first choice or the Norweigan when he returns to first team action.

Swedish international Victor Lindelof, is set to be partnered with either Phil Jones or Chris Smalling by Solskjaer as he looks to sake his claim for the permanent manager’s job a his former club.

Sevilla manager Machin has had to rotate his defence constantly this season, switching between a back four and back three, depending on injuries and dips in form.

After losing key defender Clement Lenglet in the summer, to Barcelona, Machin decided against bringing in a big name replacement, focusing on improving other areas of the squad.

He did bring in Ligue 1 defensive pair Joris Gnagnon from Rennes and Ibrahim Amadou from Lille, but neither player has shown their best form in Andalusia.

Machin has opted for Daniel Carrico and Simon Kjaer as his preferred central defence pairing, with Sergi Gomez added in when a three man defence is opted for.

Whilst Carrico and Kjaer offer experience to Machin’s side, there is a concern they lack the pace and physicality needed for a packed schedule of fixtures in 2019.

Bailly would remedy that issue, as when he is on form, he does have capability to dominate opposition players and provide an excellent sweeper option when required.

With Bailly under contract at Old Trafford until 2020, Sevilla will have tempt United with a bid in excess of £20 million needed to get a deal over the line, with Solskjaer potentially wanting to keep Bailly at the club as an option as a squad player.

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