Manchester United could sell five defenders before strengthening the clubs defence this summer. It is already understood that both Phil Jones and Eric Bailly have signalled that they would be looking to leave the Old Trafford club this summer but Erik ten Hag could get rid of three more.
A report in the Manchester Evening News has given the suggestion that United’s bloated defence could be stopping Ten Hag from strengthening the area so therefore other players will have to be sold. It is understandable as United should be getting rid of the players no longer wanted.
Added to Jones and Bailly, Brandon Williams, who has been made available for a transfer, Axel Tuanzebe and Aaron Wan-Bissaka have been named in the report. Jones and Bailly were used sparingly last season and Wan-Bissaka seemed to lose his form, seeing Diogo Dalot take his place.
Williams and Tuanzebe spent the season away from United on loan with the former playing for Norwich City for the season, not really showing signs of being able to challenge for the left-back position at United, which is a shame after his earlier performances for United.
Tuanzebe spent part of the season at Aston Villa, making 11 appearances, neither scoring or assisting a goal then making the move to Napoli in Italy, making two appearances and failing to score or assist a single goal. It was not a good season for the 24-year-old.
Wan-Bissaka has spent three seasons at United now and has struggled to make his transfer worth the money United paid out to sign him in the summer of 2019. He has made 126 appearances for United, scoring two goals and ten assists but last season he was well off the boil.
Jones and Bailly both had few appearances last season and the writing was on the wall regarding the future of both players, hence why they will be seeking an exit. United should not price Jones out of a move, valuing him at £15 million back in January.
Bailly could raise £8 million or a figure close to that with Williams priced around £10 million. It is Wan-Bissaka where United look set to lose money spending £50 million on him with his market value dropping to below half of that – United will struggle to sell him for £20 million, in my opinion.
Tuanzebe is a player with a good future, especially now he seems to have worked on his physique and seems to have become a unit – which might see him retained, especially if the club does not get much interest for him. Perhaps £5 million or more could seal a deal for him.
Written by John Walker