Now the transfer window has been allowed to take centre stage in the footballing world with the club season completed, Manchester United can get down to the business of strengthening their squad. With the window’s length reduced due to this summer’s World Cup, the pressure is on to solidify targets and complete deals with greater haste than in previous years, and with reports in multiple outlets suggesting that Shakhtar Donetsk’s Fred and FC Porto’s Diogo Dalot could be making their way to Old Trafford shortly, it seems as if Jose Mourinho has encouraged the club’s higher-ups to get his targets signed quickly.
One position that United require some back-up is left-back, with Ashley Young Mourinho’s preferred choice last season. The former Chelsea boss seems to remain distinctly unimpressed with Luke Shaw, and with Matteo Darmian likely to be leaving the club for Juventus, it seems as if some cover or competition for the England international is vital. The Sun have an outlandish but exciting suggestion for that, with a report stating that Barcelona’s Jordi Alba is currently still waiting for discussions to start on a new deal, and that United are interested. It carries quotes from the player’s agent Vicente Fores via Sport:
“Raul Sanllehi was still at the club when they told us not to worry, that they were going to call us to renew. But we are still waiting. It’s been a year and a half now. We don’t understand anything, maybe it’s normal for Barça or maybe they’re not happy with the performances of a player included in FIFA’s XI and who is the defender with the most assists in European football.”
“There are two years left (on Alba’s current deal) and we will see what’s going on, but we’re relaxed about it.”
The suggestion certainly appears to be that Alba isn’t close to forcing his way out of Camp Nou, but being made to wait 18 months for a new contract is hardly a show of faith from the Barca higher-ups. If the situation continues, then one would hope that United would push the boat out to sign such an excellent talent in a position that clearly needs strengthening.