Eric Bailly 'ready to quit' Man United with two Premier League clubs lurking 1 year ago

Eric Bailly 'ready to quit' Man United with two Premier League clubs lurking

Eric Bailly's time at Manchester United could soon be up, according to a report

Bailly became Jose Mourinho's first signing at Old Trafford when he brought him to the club from Villarreal two summers ago and showed plenty of promise in his early appearances.

However, the Ivory Coast international has not started for United since their defeat to Brighton in August, making two substitute appearances in the wins at Burnley and Watford. A report by The Mirror suggests that Mourinho has blamed Bailly for the loss at Brighton, in which he conceded a penalty, adding that he may now look to leave United in January.

The 24-year-old  has had his fair share of injuries during his spell in Manchester, yet is regarded by many as being the club's best defender. Should United decide to sell, the same report adds that Arsenal and Tottenham would be amongst the clubs looking to sign him.

All this said, a decision to let him go in January - especially given that United were looking to strengthen their defence in the summer - would seem a strange one. Bailly being allowed to leave for a rival club seems even more unlikely.

Only back in July, Mourinho was praising Bailly for stepping up to start a pre-season game when Chris Smalling pulled up in the warm-ups. He told reporters:

"Eric is a team boy, he is a great boy. He is an honest man, always ready to give everything for the team.

"That is why we have him, why we still have him and why he is going to stay with us because football teams need people like him, like Herrera. This kind of people where the club is more important than anything else."

For now, though, it seems Bailly has work to do to convince Mourinho he's worthy of reclaiming a starting berth at Old Trafford.

Another report by the Manchester Evening News points out that it appears the United boss has finally settled on Chris Smalling and Victor Lindelof - also culpable during the defeat to Brighton - as his preferred defensive pairing.