When reports broke on Saturday night about Manchester United being close to signing Eric Bailly, a lot of people’s first question was: ‘Who?’
Of course, anyone that had watched Spanish football last season knows all about the talented defender.
Spanish newspaper AS claim that the 22-year-old has a release clause of £30 million and United are keen to bring the quick, versatile, strong and comfortable centre back to Old Trafford.
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However, Jose Mourinho and the Red Devils aren’t the only side interested in signing the Villarreal defender. Bayern Munich, Barcelona and Manchester City are all reportedly tracking him but it appears United are top of the list.
For those that didn’t watch La Liga last campaign, they must be wondering how good Bailly is. The usual YouTube compilation can make even the worst footballer look good so you can’t really judge him on those.
United fans will no doubt will excited after watching those clips but there’s another video doing the rounds that may dampen that enthusiasm about the arrival of Bailly.
In a match against Atletico Madrid last season, he was humiliated by Fernando Torres. It was 0-0 at El Madrigal with 15 minutes remaining when Bailly was caught out by Torres on the half-way line.
The Spaniard surged past him before rounding the goalkeeper. But the humiliation wasn’t complete for Bailly. As Torres dropped his shoulder with an empty net, Bailly went flying in as an attempt to block his effort only for the striker to take a touch before rolling it into the empty net.
When Bailly was caught out on the half-way line by Torres it was reminiscent of Nemanja Vidic’s mistake at Old Trafford against the same forward. Watch the video below to compare:
Vidic went on to receive four red cards against Liverpool mainly thanks to Torres’ torment and the Old Trafford faithful will hope Bailly will fare better against their arch-rivals - although he won’t have to face Atleti’s striker next season.