Manchester gets Bailly for £32m in Mourinho’s first trade

ManU Bailly

Eric Bailly is hoping to complete a “dream” move to Manchester United after the Old Trafford club moved to make him the first signing of the Jose Mourinho era.

The centre-back has shone for Villarreal over the past 18 months since signing from Espanyol as the replacement for Arsenal-bound Gabriel Paulista, and played a huge part in making them one of La Liga’s toughest defences.

Athletic and assertive in his playing style, Bailly, 22, received interest from Barcelona and Manchester City in early spring but the clubs were told he wouldn’t consider any offers until the end of the campaign.

The season culminated in Villarreal qualifying for the Champions League and making the Europa League semi-finals.

Manchester United contacted the Castellón club this week and are negotiating over the structure of a deal that is likely to reach some £32million.

Personal terms have not been agreed but are not expected to be a problem, according to a source close to the player.

While interest from other clubs has waned, Bailly is said to consider the opportunity to move to United as too good to turn down.

“As a boy everyone knows clubs like Manchester United and this will be realisation of a dream for Eric,” a source said.

“These are things that you can not say no to, and Villarreal know that.”

The Mirror.

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