It was reported by Marca on Tuesday afternoon that Manchester United were “ready to fight” Chelsea to sign Jules Kounde.
Later in the day, Kounde displayed some fighting spirit of his own when he lost his head… as he attempted to remove Jordi Alba’s.
Kounde is likely to cost £68m should a move to England materialise, according to the report from Marca, who also claim that Chelsea had a bid for the centre-back rejected last summer.
But he is currently contracted to Sevilla and featured for 64 minutes of their 1-1 draw with Barcelona on Tuesday.
His 25th outing of the season was ended by referee Carlos del Cerro Grande, who produced a straight red card after Kounde angrily threw the ball at Barca left-back Alba.
Alba immediately dropped to the ground after being struck in the head and, although his reaction was unquestionably exaggerated, it did look like he may be in a bit of pain as Kounde had chucked the ball from point-blank range with some power.
Power is one of the aspects of Kounde’s game that may have attracted United and Chelsea to the 23-year-old, who is also incredibly impressive when it comes to his speed and positioning.
But this unsavoury incident with Alba could well be cause for concern for those chasing Kounde, as it was his second direct red card of the season.
In September while on international duty with France, Kounde was sent off for a brutal tackle on Arsenal left-back Sead Kolasinac during a 1-1 draw with Bosnia and Herzegovina.
What is his problem with left-backs?
Jules Kounde gets a straight red for throwing the ball at Jordi Alba’s face ? pic.twitter.com/SjLC6yTdHv
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) December 21, 2021
Jules Kounde with one of the most silly red cards you’ll see this season.
Hope Jordi Alba makes a quick recovery. ?pic.twitter.com/Ravvc74XYg
— SPORTbible (@sportbible) December 21, 2021
— Shamoon Hafez (@ShamoonHafez) December 21, 2021
— Out Of Context Football (@nocontextfooty) December 21, 2021