Ivory Coast defender Eric Bailly has today completed a move to Manchester United, but it appears that new Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho could further change the dynamic of his back-line over the coming weeks and months.
Indeed, the Manchester Evening News have reported that the self-proclaimed 'Special One' could follow up the signing of Bailly with another defensive recruit.
MEN named the quartet of Raphael Varane, John Stones, Aymeric Laporte and Leonardo Bonucci as potential signings for the club in this transfer window.
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Varane, who is currently starring at Spanish giants Real Madrid, has failed to hold down a regular place in the side but is widely recognised as one of the leading young defenders in world football. United boss Mourinho, of course, previously managed him at the Bernabeu.
Athletic Club's Laporte, meanwhile, has been heavily linked with a move to Manchester City, but it appears that the Red Devils could yet enter the race to bring him to England.
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Then there's Everton defender John Stones, who has had a topsy-turvy time of it over the course of the past year. It was heavily reported that Mourinho attempted to bring him to Chelsea last summer and it appears that he could yet look to secure his signature at the Theatre of Dreams.
Finally, there's Juventus defender Bonucci, who would represent an experienced signing for the club. The 29-year-old racked up 36 Serie A appearances during the club's title-winning campaign.
Despite United's fairly strong record at the back last season, it appears that Mourinho is determined to add a number of high profile players to his squad.
In all honesty, Dutchman Daley Blind was always going to be a stopgap player at the heart of the club's defence and it will be interesting to see if he stays in Manchester ahead of the new campaign.
Chris Smalling, who is currently on international duty with England, enjoyed a fine season but may also be sweating about his place in the side.
What will Mourinho's defence look like next season? Here are just three potential back-lines:
- Timothy Fosu-Mensah, Chris Smalling, Eric Bailly, Luke Shaw.
- Chris Smalling, Raphael Varane, Eric Bailly, Luke Shaw.
- Phil Jones, John Stones, Eric Bailly, Daley Blind.
What do you expect Mourinho's defence to look like? Have your say in the comments section below!