Why Manchester United must avoid renewing Eric Bailly’s contract
Eric Bailly has had a terrible time of late at Manchester United. The former Villarreal defender picked up a knee ligament injury during pre-season and is expected to be out for a while.
The 25-year-old suffered a major injury in the previous campaign too and missed a major chunk of the season.
Bailly hasn’t been able to cement a place in the United team since his move from the La Liga side and is a free agent at the end of this season.
However, the Sun reports that Manchester United want to extend the defender’s deal by two years and not lose him on a free.
The Red Devils can activate an option in Bailly’s deal that extends his stay by a couple of years but they should cut their losses now and let him leave.
The Sun adds that Arsenal were interested in the Ivorian during the summer but there are no guarantees they will return for him next season.
United have several centre-backs on their books and losing Bailly in the January window would not be the worst option.
Phil Jones, Chris Smalling, Victor Lindelof and Harry Maguire are more than enough to get them through the season while they also have Marcos Rojo on their books.
Bailly has been inconsistent since his move to United and a fresh start could be the right move for the 25-year-old.
Ligament injuries are tough to return from and that could affect his valuation in the future windows.
Even if United extend his stay by a couple of years, there is no surety a top club will come in for the Ivorian.
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Bailly will also find it difficult to replace Lindelof from the starting XI as the Swede seems to be finding his feet alongside summer signing Maguire.
The Red Devils lost Ander Herrera on a free in the summer and that was a bit of a blow.
However, losing Bailly on a free or in January would not be that big a loss, especially for a financially strong club like United.