Three Centre Backs Jose Mourinho Could Target For Manchester United To Form A Solid Partnership At The Back

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Jose Mourinho is well aware that he needs a proven world class centre back to help him win back the league title. As such, even after buying the promising Eric Bailly and having publicly stated that he sees Chris Smalling and Phil Jones as his first choice centre back pairing, he is is targeting a veteran centre-back to help him win the battle. Smalling has had one good season at the back, while Jones is injury prone and unreliable while Bailly is an inexperienced player in the Premier league and has to be integrated into the hustle and bustle of the league. As such, we take a look at three seasoned centre backs who could be on Ed Woodward’s shopping list this summer:

1. Leonardo Bonucci

Josep Guardiola is so desperate to land the Italy centre-half from Juventus that apparently Manchester City are believed to have ring-fenced a €100million package to secure the services of the man, who again impressed at Euro 2016. Around £50m in a transfer fee and the same again in wages over five years. Talent like his doesn’t come cheap.

But Bonucci is also said to be interesting Mourinho. And it’s easy to see why. Nicknamed Bonnibauer from the fans of Turin’s Old Lady, Bonucci glides around the pitch with an elegance of a Milan catwalk. And at 29, he could be just the man Mourinho needs to guide, cajole and marshal his young backline.

2. Pepe

The Portugese may have received a lot of sticks for his aggressive character over the years, but you simply cannot argue with a trophy cabinet like his: Champions League, Euro Cup, La Liga and King’s Cup, he has won it all. He played under Mourinho at the Bernabeu during the manager’s three-year spell and although signed a new deal last year, that contract is up in 2017 and he wouldn’t cost United the kind of astronomical amounts in transfer fees Bonucci would command. It is likely that Zinedine Zidane would now like to give more chances to Raphael Varane now, so United may look to sign the 33 year old if the situation so aligns itself.

3. Jerome Boateng

Given how the Portugese is a man with expensive tastes, it wouldn’t be surprising if he tries to raid Bayern Munich for Jerome Boateng. At 27, the man has it all, trophies that include the World Cup, experience, that has seen him play, and win at both England and Germany, and class, which has seen him being ranked as one of the best defenders in world football right now. Boateng signed a new deal last year that is due to keep him at the Bavarian giants until 2021. He would cost United millions but don’t rule out Mourinho mulling over a move for Guardiola’s former player.

A thinker,thus a cynic.