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Three Manchester United players that could agree pre-contarct with European clubs in January

Bengaluru, November 15: From when Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has taken charge at Manchester United, the Premier League side have been on a rebuilding spree and it has seen them get rid of players who are either unsuitable to his system or on a downward spiral.

During last January transfer window, Marouane Fellaini left the side for China while this summer the likes of Matteo Darmian, Chris Smalling, Alexis Sanchez and Romelu Lukaku departed to Italy either permanently or on loan for the season.

United also allowed Ander Herrera and Antonio Valencia to move on a free transfer.

And there could be many more big departures as well in the next few windows and at least three players can agree a Bosman deal as early as in January. So, here we take look at those three names whose contract expires in June:

Nemanja Matic

Nemanja Matic was an essential player for Jose Mourinho as he helped the side get their best-ever finish, since Sir Alex Ferguson's retirement. But from the very next season onwards, the Serbian midfielder has looked to be on a downward spiral.

Solskjaer has not given him many chances either due to the deterioration or no vacancy and there have been strong rumours that he could leave the side in January.

Italy, especially Inter and Ac Milan have been touted as his next destination. Matic has only started two Premier League games this season and managed just 350 minutes in the first-team.

Now as per MEN, the defensive midfielder realises that his role for Serbia in the European Championships next summer could be in jeopardy if he fails to get some playing time and thus a January move is likely to transpire now.

However, with United already short of options in midfield the Red Devils may force him to remain at the club till his contract end. But, a pre-contract agreement with another club outside England is still a big possibility as United are surely unlikely to offer him a new contract.

Ashley Young

The former Aston Villa winger has been a utility player for a quite a some for Manchester United under several managers who slowly from a winger has now been turned into as a fullback. However, for the last couple of years, every Summer there have been talks of him leaving the side.

Last January, he was again linked with an exit as a free transfer but Solskjaer decided to hand to hand him a new deal of one year. After Antonio Valencia's departure, Solskjaer retained him for one more season.

An influx of experience and leadership quality in a young dressing room is understood be the main reason behind the extension. But the rumour around the club is that the player has already been told that this is his last season and he won't be offered any more extension.

With United already getting the first-team recruitment with wan Bissaka and emergence of youngster Brandon Williams as well the presence of Luke Shaw, the veteran England international now looks to be someone out of the picture for an upcoming period.

United are unlikely to release him in January as well. Although there is a possibility that he agrees on a pre-contract with any money riched like MLS or Chinese league in the winter window.

Eric Bailly

When Mourinho signed him from Villareal, United fans were thrilled that they got someone for a long future who would command their defence.

The outcome of the first season was also assuring. But often injured and mistake-prone, Bailly slowly demoted in the pecking order and under new boss Solskjaer that too has not changed.

The Ivory Coast international is currently out injured but had he been fit, he would have been behind Lindelof and Maguire. At such point, it is unlikely the player will spend his time mostly on the bench and with his contract sets to end in summer, he could well look for a move after getting fit.

Although there are still beliefs left that if he returns back to full fitness and works harder, there is still very much possibility of him making the grade at United. But surely he has to work his way into the side in a much tougher condition.

There were rumours in Summer that he was linked with Arsenal over a transfer but it did not materialise but the rumours could soon return again in winter as well. If Solskjaer and Bailly both are not convinced with the fate and terms of the player at United, a solution could be reached.

And with just six months left in his contract, if United don't think of prolonging his stay, there is every possibility of offloading him in January although the player could agree to a Bosman deal in January for a Summer transfer as well.

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Story first published: Friday, November 15, 2019, 12:34 [IST]
Other articles published on Nov 15, 2019
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