Manchester United appear to have shifted their attention from Victor Lindelof towards Roma’s Kostas Manolas, according to fresh transfer reports. The centre-back has been one of the best players for the Italian club over the last three seasons. He joined Roma in a €13 million deal from Olympiakos in the summer of 2014. It has been a rapid ascent up the ladder for the 25-year-old, who is now valued in excess of £52 million by the Italian outfit.
Yet, it seems that this transfer value has not deterred United as the club are ready to even go beyond the £50 million world-record fee for a defender in order to sign the Greek international. Roma, though, have categorically denied reports that they are in negotiations with the Red Devils for a move. Victor Lindelof transfer to United has been on and off in the last few weeks. Even though there is still plenty of time for the transfer to be completed, rumours about a move for Manolas indicates that the situation is not exactly healthy.
At 25 years of age, Manolas would bring a wealth of experience to the United first team. He has been a first-team regular pretty much throughout his three-year spell with the Italian outfit. Roma have the second best defensive record in the division with only table toppers Juventus capable of boosting a better record.Manolas has missed just four league matches this campaign and he continues to play an integral role in Roma’s title challenge.
Selling him in January would be a catastrophe for the Italian outfit not just in terms of challenging for the title, but also in terms of keeping ahead of Napoli and AC Milan in the race for the top three places. As a result, Roma have ruled out the possibility of a move. Roma director Mauro Baldissoni said:
“Manolas is leaving in January? Where is he going?
“Manchester United? I’m not aware of this.”
United have been on an excellent run of form, which appeared to have dispelled the need for a new defender in January. Jose Mourinho seemed to be extremely happy with his current centre-back pairing of Marcos Rojo and Phil Jones. Yet, rumours about United bringing in an expensive new signing do not seem to go away. The club have also been linked with a move for Southampton defender Jose Fonte.