Man United receive boost in chase for long-term target as club identify a replacement for him

Napoli identify replacement for Manchester United target Kalidou Koulibaly

Manchester United have been long-term admirers of Senegalese defender Kalidou Koulibaly (h/t Express). It finally looks like we could get our man.

According to the Italian publication Corriere dello Sport (h/t Express), Napoli have already identified a replacement for their star defender. The player is Sevilla’s Brazilian center-back Diego Carlos.

In spite of this positive news, we are unlikely to have a free go at a player of Koulibaly’s stature. Paris Saint-Germain are also very interested in the player and have already held talks with the player’s agents (h/t Daily Star).

Kalidou Koulibaly could be on his way to Old Trafford
Kalidou Koulibaly could be on his way to Old Trafford

The Parisians view the Senegalese as the perfect replacement for veteran defender Thiago Silva. He is however not likely to go cheap with Napoli set to command a big fee (h/t Daily Star).

Napoli chief Aurelio de Laurentiis will demand a fee of around £81m for Koulibaly. If met, this will make Koulibaly the most expensive defender in the world (h/t Daily Star).

If United do decide to meet the valuation, it will be the second time in two seasons that we will have broken the record for the most expensive defender. That distinction is held by the current club captain Harry Maguire. (h/t BBC)

Harry Maguire is the most expensive defender in the world
Harry Maguire and Aaron Wan Bissaka have transformed us at the back

United have focussed on revamping their defence with the signings of Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Harry Maguire in the last summer. The addition of Koulibaly will further strengthen an area that has at times been found lacking.

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A strong defence gives us a solid base to build on. The addition of Koulibaly should potentially give us the best centre-back pairing in the league, at least on paper.