Manchester United failed to land any of Jose Mourinho’s centre-back targets last summer and subsequently we ended up conceding more goals than any previous Premier League season.
With Ole Gunnar Solskjaer tied down to a three-year contract the new manager can expect to be given some money during this summer’s transfer window as we look to build a team capable of getting Champions League football back at Old Trafford.
The centre-back position is only one priority for us this season but it’s a big priority given the mess we have been at the back this past season – keeping just two clean sheets at Old Trafford.
Reports of last summer’s target, Toby Alderweireld, have yet to redevelop in recent months but the Belgian international could certainly be on our target list. But for now, it appears that Ole is looking to Italy, and specifically, Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly.
The Senegalese international has been a rock in their defence over the past couple of seasons, and the 27-year-old was strongly linked with a move to both us and Chelsea last summer too.
It was reported by the Mirror yesterday that Koulibaly is our number one target this summer, and speaking on the Sports Bar on talkSport with Andy Goldstein last night, Evening Standard journalist Simon Johnson gave us a positive update for us, saying:
“Koulibaly they’ve been after for a a long time, they need that strong centre-half.
The Express quoted £75 million but Napoli are notoriously tough to negotiate with and I think you’re looking at close to £100m.”
“The Koulibaly thing, I’ve heard only good things about the fact that him coming to United is very close.”
Andy Goldstein is a Manchester United fan himself, and working as a journalist for talkSport as well as being a presenter on MUTV, he’s bound to have some reliable contacts. Hopefully this is one of them and that we can line up a move for the rock of a centre-back this summer.
The capture of Kalidou Koulibaly would be a huge statement from the club about our intentions to get back into the top four, and ultimately, launch a title challenge in the coming seasons.