Spanish giants Barcelona have identified Daley Blind as a potential target to bolster their defensive ranks. The Netherlands international has fallen out-of-favour under Jose Mourinho and has not managed a Premier League appearance since September.
According to Marca, the Catalan giants could consider a potential deal for the Netherlands international, who was on their radar shortly after the 2014 World Cup finals in Brazil. Blind ultimately left Ajax to reunite with Dutch coach Louis van Gaal at Old Trafford, and he has since showcased his versatility playing in numerous positions including central defence, holding midfield and right-back.
As per Marca, Blind’s versatility is one of the primary reasons behind the interest with Ernesto Valverde looking for a long-term replacement for Javier Mascherano, who continues to be linked with a move to China. The Dutchman, however, is not the leading target on Barca’s shortlist with Real Sociedad’s Inigo Martinez and compatriot Stefan di Vrij also being monitored.
Jose Mourinho loves to have utility players in his squad, but Blind’s future remains a topic of question with United yet to activate a 12-month extension clause in his contract, which would keep him beyond the summer of 2018.
Earlier on Friday, Mourinho confirmed that Eric Bailly has been sidelined for at least three months owing to a serious ankle injury, and this could restrict Blind’s potential exit in January, although he could still discuss a pre-contract agreement with a club overseas, as things stand.