Manchester United are reportedly considering a £25m bid for Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane – one of Jose Mourinho’s favourite players when he was in charge at Los Blancos.
According to The Mirror, the Red Devils scouted Varane in 2011 but ended up signing Phil Jones from Blackburn Rovers for £16m instead, with the Frenchman moving to the Bernabeu.
Jones is now part of an unremarkable group of centre-backs at Old Trafford. Midfielder Daley Blind has partnered Chris Smalling for most of the season, although United have a solid defensive record.
And The Mirror reports that Varane is back on United’s radar ahead of the summer transfer window, when he could be reunited with Mourinho, who continues to be linked with Louis van Gaal’s job.
Mourinho never got the benefit of Varane’s full potential while he was managing Madrid, but is quoted by the Daily Mail as describing him as ‘the best young defender in the world’ in March 2014.
Varane remains highly thought of across Europe, but he has been rotated alongside Sergio Ramos and Pepe in the heart of Real’s defence this season, while he would be a leader of the Red Devils’ back line.
The 23-year-old has already captained France twice, becoming the youngest player to do so against Armenia in October 2015, and has the potential to form a formidable partnership with Smalling.
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