Manchester United reportedly remain hopeful of luring Paris Saint-Germain star Marquinhos to the club this summer, with manager Jose Mourinho said to be keen to strengthen his defensive options.
According to Samuel Luckhurst of the Manchester Evening News, the Red Devils “have touched base to gauge how interested he would be in a Premier League transfer,” with PSG said to be looking at extending his current contract, which expires in the summer of 2019.
“At this juncture, United’s interest is tentative, and they are insistent Marquinhos will have to put pressure on PSG to let him leave,” continued Luckhurst. “The indication is United will not bend over backwards like they did with Paul Pogba last summer, waiting like a lovestruck date for the pampered prom queen, and have set a price on Marquinhos’ possible fee and wages.”
Another central defender is set to be on Mourinho’s summer shopping list, with the United boss struggling to find a regular partner for Eric Bailly. Here is what Marquinhos would potentially add:
As noted in the report, Barcelona have been linked with a move for the €42.2m-rated Brazil international in the past, although the sale of David Luiz ahead of the current campaign has seen Marquinhos promoted to a more regular first-team role alongside compatriot Thiago Silva at the back.
In the main, the 22-year-old has impressed. He may not be the most physical defender, but he’s intelligent and sharp. As a result, journalist Jonathan Johnson doesn’t see PSG cashing in on him:
I think Marquinhos wants a new PSG contract. In any case, no, I do not think PSG will agree to sell him.
— Jonathan Johnson (@Jon_LeGossip) May 9, 2017
In theory at least, Marquinhos would be an ideal partner for a front-foot operator like Bailly and given the age of both, there’d be potential for a prosperous long-term linkup.
However, if United were going to snap up the centre-back, you sense they’d need to break the bank, something Luckhurst hinted they’d be unwilling to do. As aforementioned, Marquinhos has become a crucial component in the PSG XI and the French giants will not want to lose one of the most exciting young defenders in world football.