Manchester United are reportedly considering a Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti as a possible alternative for Raphael Varane.
As reported by Mundo Deportivo, Samuel Umtiti has been identified as a potential cost-effective alternative for Raphael Varane by Manchester United. The Premier League heavyweights are also considering the likes of Wesley Fofana, Ben White, Pau Torres and Sergio Ramos to that end.
Samuel Umtiti has seen his career go off the boil massively following a strong maiden campaign at Barcelona in 2016/17. Since then, a spate of injuries have stifled his progress significantly and the fact that he has spent more time on the sidelines than on the pitch has invariably impacted his performance levels.
Till date, Umtiti has turned out 131 times for Barcelona and as things stand, he is at the bottom of the pecking order for senior centre-backs at Camp Nou. As a result, it is not hard to see why he is reportedly considered to be surplus to requirements at Barcelona, and Manchester United could pounce on this situation.
Manchester United remain keen on signing a centre-back despite the fact that Eric Bailly has signed a renewal this week. However, it is also important to note that Bailly has had to deal with his fair share of injuries over the course of his stint with the Red Devils, while Victor Lindelof has been troubled by a niggling back issue as well this season.
As a result, the need to sign a central defender is understandable and to that end, Raphael Varane is reported to be the priority target for Manchester United, who are in advanced talks to sign him. However, in case they are unable to secure the services of the Real Madrid superstar, it is prudent for United to keep their options open.
As a result, Umtiti has appeared on the radar of the Premier League heavyweights, although his own tryst with injuries means the Barcelona defender should not ideally be a target. Apart from Umtiti, the likes of Ben White, Wesley Fofana, Pau Torres and Sergio Ramos have also been mentioned as alternatives for Varane.
Meanwhile, Barcelona, on their part, seem to be planning for life after Umtiti as well, with the Catalans also scouring for a replacement in the form of Aissa Mandi, Jorge Cuenca, Marcos Senesi and others. What now remains to be seen is if Manchester United turn their attention towards Umtiti for good, or if they press ahead with a move for Varane.