Man United remain interested in Umtiti


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It seems slightly odd to suggest that Manchester United need a new centre back, given that they have the best defensive record in the Premier League with just 19 goals conceded in 27 games.

Despite the stats however none of their centre halves have looked particularly convincing this season, so it is unsurprising that manager Jose Mourinho is in the market for a star replacement.

The name at the top of the list is that of Barcelona’s Samuel Umtiti, who the Red Devils have been linked with for some time, according to the Metro. They even offered the French international a contract in January, and flirted with paying his £54m release clause.

United have found it difficult to establish a consistent partnership in central defence, owing mostly to the long-term absence of Eric Bailly through injury. Phil Jones is prone to the odd match-losing mistake, as proved by his calamitous own-goal against Tottenham, while Chris Smalling’s dive against Newcastle was evident of his limitations.

Umtiti meanwhile has established himself as a top defender at Barcelona, playing a crucial role as part of a defence that has conceded just 11 goals in 23 La Liga games this season, and propelling the Catalan side to the top of the table.