Man Utd outgoing transfer ‘unlikely’ as club ‘turn’ attention to Man City defender

Eric Bailly and Aymeric Laporte are among the players Al Nassr have considered signing this summer.
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Eric Bailly’s transfer to Al Nassr is now looking ‘unlikely’ as the Saudi Arabian club have instead turned their attention to signing Manchester City’s Eric Bailly, according to reports.

The Ivory Coast international has been deemed surplus to requirements at Old Trafford and Erik ten Hag wants to move the defender on in order to generate funds for incoming players. Reports earlier this month had suggested Bailly, who has not been involved in Manchester United’s pre-season preparations, was close to joining Al Nassr, but instead it now looks like he could remain at the Red Devils for the time being.

Sky Sports’ reporter Dharmesh Sheth tweeted to say Al Nassr had ‘turned’ to Laporte, with Bailly now exploring other options, and has already turned down an approach from Besiktas.

BBC Sport claim City have ‘accepted an undisclosed offer’ for Laporte from the Saudi Pro League side, who have already signed Cristiano Ronaldo, Alex Telles and Sadio Mane in the last 12 months.

City are willing to let Laporte leave after he slipped down the pecking order at the Etihad, and the 29-year-old is currently sixth-choice at the heart of defence. The decision to bring in another left-footed centre-back also underlined that the Spanish international isn’t part of Pep Guardiola’s immediate plans, with Josko Gvardiol arriving from RB Leipzig in a £76.6m deal.

Laporte joined City in 2018 and has picked up five Premier League winners’ medals during his time in England. He also won the FA Cup twice, the Carabao Cup on three occasions, and in June collected a maiden Champions League trophy.

But Laporte made just 24 appearances last term as City won the treble, and he was seen in tears during the club’s final home match of the campaign, a 1-0 win over Chelsea.

Should Laporte move to Saudi Arabia, he will join several star names who have made the switch to the Arab state this summer, including Karim Benzema, N’Golo Kante, Neymar and Riyad Mahrez.

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