What's the latest Man Utd transfer news?
While Eric Bailly's new contract could mean United don't buy a big-name defender, the report suggests Torres might do enough to convince Ole Gunnar Solskjaer he is worth pursuing should he impress during May 26th's showpiece meeting in Gdansk.
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The Spaniard, along with Sevilla's Jules Kounde and Real Madrid's Raphael Varane, has been linked with a move to Old Trafford, though the fact Bailly did extend his stay did lead journalist Dean Jones to suggest on a recent episode of the Touchline Talk Podcast that United were unlikely to break the bank for a centre-back.
How much would Pau Torres cost?
At the moment, the 24-year-old is rated at £45m by Transfermarkt and still has over three years left on his contract, so the Spanish side wouldn't appear to be in much of a need to sell.
Still, according to ESPN (via The Metro) in April, Villarreal would reportedly be prepared to accept a bid of around £43m this summer with the player himself looking to move on.
Would Pau Torres be a good signing for Man United?
Hailed as 'sensational' by Spanish football expert Sid Lowe after Spain beat Germany 6-0 in November 2020, Torres' statistics do compare favourably to United's current crop of central defenders.
Using an FBREF player comparison tool lining up his performance data this season alongside that of Bailly's, Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof, Torres' numbers stack up pretty nicely.
On a per-game basis, he has a higher pressing success rate (36.8%) than any of the United defenders, is dribbled past fewer times and plays more passes when being pressed himself than anyone other than Maguire.
Given United are likely to dominate the ball more often than not, that last statistic could be crucial. Indeed, alongside Maguire, he could potentially form a defensive line capable of dealing with opponents looking to win the ball back higher up the pitch, perhaps helping break opposing teams in a low block down.
Crucially, Torres was clocked at an impressive top speed of 34.9km (roughly 21 miles an hour) by La Razon in March 2020 and could help bring pace to the backline, something former United great Rio Ferdinand has claimed the club currently lack.
"I think that's Ole's biggest concern - can he leave Maguire one v one on the halfway line? Or Lindelof?" he said to his YouTube channel in March.
"It's proven that you can't as that's not their main attributes.
"Harry Maguire is good at a lot of other things but that area, that's one of his weak points."
If United can get him, Torres could really help offer something different to their defence.
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