Barcelona have to match Manchester United’s £5.3million-a-year offer in order to hold on to key player

Samuel Umtiti

According to reports, Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho had been hoping to sign Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti during the January transfer window in order to bolster his defensive options. Ernesto Valverde’s side are, however, confident that they can keep hold of the French international.

United put forward a salary package of £102,000-a-week to Umtiti and were hoping to trigger his £54million release clause. Umtiti, however, instead chose to remain put at the Camp Nou.

According to Sport, The Spanish giants have promised Umtiti a contract extension until 2023 or 2024. The goal is to get Umtiti to agree to a new deal and in doing so, follow the likes of Andres Iniesta, Lionel Messi, Gerard Pique and Sergi Roberto in committing the future with the club.

The Barca chiefs want the deal to be finalised before the world cup. Barcelona will, however, have to work on matching the £5.3million-a-year offer that was put forward by United if they are to keep hold of Umtiti.

Furthermore, France are one of the favourites to win the 2018 world cup and if they do have a deep run in the tournament, Umtiti’s value and demand will only escalate. The Cameroon-born Umtiti started off his career with French club Lyon before moving to Barcelona during the summer of 2016.

His value at the Catalan club has increased this season as he has gone on to make 25 appearances in all competitions. The 24-year-old so far has 14 caps for the French national team. United had been looking to sign Umtiti as Mourinho looks to reinforce his backline so that the Red Devils can once again establish themselves as Premier League title contenders.

United have not won the League since the 2012-13 season when Sir Alex Ferguson was in charge and one could argue that we have looked like a shadow of the team that we once were, after the retirement of the legendary manager. However, things have improved under Mourinho.

Should Umtiti eventually put pen to paper and secure a new deal with Barcelona, United will need to look elsewhere.