Clearly Harry Maguire was supposed to be the answer to Man United’s defensive issues, but there’s still something missing in that back line.
Maguire does lack pace and agility so he can be easily exposed, and it’s emerged that neither Bailly or Lindelof are good enough to create a formidable pairing at the back.
It means the club will need to find a complete defender who can look after themselves while also covering for others, but world class defenders don’t tend to be available.
The one exception this summer could be Real Madrid star Raphael Varane, and a report from Spain has suggested he’s not going to sign a new contract with Real Madrid and he’s also in advanced talks with Man United:
? EXCLUSIVA de @10JoseAlvarez ?
??"VARANE lo tiene muy AVANZADO con el UNITED"
— El Chiringuito TV (@elchiringuitotv) April 15, 2021
Varane hasn’t been perfect this season and he had some shocking games at the start of the campaign, but he looks like he’s returning to form and he really is the complete defender.
He’s fast, composed on the ball, solid in the air and he reads the game very well so that is just what United need, while he’s happy to play on either side so Maguire could move to the right centre-back slot if needed.
The point about his contract is significant because it runs out in the summer of 2022, so Real will need to sell him this summer to avoid him leaving for nothing.
It will still be a big shock if Real don’t manage to keep him because Sergio Ramos could also be on his way soon, but it does look like United have a genuine chance of making this happen.