Manchester United are reportedly mulling over a move for AS Roma’s defensive stalwart Kostas Manolas, who has a £30.5 million release clause.
According to Daily Mirror, Manchester United are plotting a move for Kostas Manolas as they aim to strengthen their defensive department. It is believed that the Roma defender has a release clause worth £30.5 million that can be activated in the summer.
The Red Devils have also shortlisted the likes of Toby Alderweireld and Kalidou Koulibaly, but a move for Manolas could make sense, especially with the defender admitting his ambition of playing in the Premier League back in June 2018.
Manolas moved to Italy in the summer of 2014 and has since become a mainstay in the AS Roma backline, having made almost 200 appearances in all competitions for the Giallorossi. He has been a consistent performer during his time in the Italian top flight and this season has been no exception, with the Greek international missing only three league games so far.
Manolas is generally advertised as a ball-playing defender, whose excellent composure on the ball combined with his impressive passing ability makes him one of the most highly regarded centre-backs in European football. He has attained a respectable passing accuracy of 88% this season – more than any other Manchester United defender (who has played at least 10 league games).
This could be beneficial for Manchester United, who have lacked the services of someone who can instigate the build-up from the back as well as moving out of position to press the attackers.
Additionally, the 27-year-old is an excellent tackler, having won 66% of his tackles this season. And, the fact that Manolas has also averaged 1.7 interceptions and 3.8 clearances per game is indicative of his defensive qualities that could certainly revamp Manchester United’s faulty backline.
Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo’s seasons have already been ravaged with injuries, while Chris Smalling and Eric Bailly have appeared inconsistent and certainly incompetent when facing big teams. Victor Lindelof thus, remains the only centre-back who can be relied upon.
The addition of Manolas, in that regard, could be a breath of fresh air for Manchester United as the Greek international has a variety of skill set that will allow him to thrive in English football, while his experience coupled with his defensive solidity will be crucial as the Red Devils look to make a push for the title next season.
As for Manolas himself, he is undoubtedly one of the top centre-backs in Italian football and a move to one of Europe’s biggest clubs could certainly boost his profile in addition to giving him the opportunity to shine in arguably the toughest league in the world.
To that end, the £30.5 million release clause seems like a complete bargain, and it remains to be seen if Manchester United are able to land the 27-year-old in the summer.