What’s the story?
Brazilian left-back, Alex Sandro is set to become the latest transfer target for the Manchester clubs as both teams look to strengthen their defence over the winter transfer window. Reports in the Italian media have stated that the full-back may become the subject of a bidding war between the two English clubs.
According to reports, The Bianconeri is set to offer the Brazilian a new and improved contract in order to ward off any potential suitors. Amongst the Manchester clubs, City seems to be more desperate to acquire the Brazilian given the lack of defensive cover in the full-back position.
In case you didn’t know...
Sandro moved to Juventus in the summer of 2015 for a sum of £22m and the Italian giants are sure to set an asking price within the range of £30-35 million. The Brazilian has shown his attacking skills as well having assisted 3 goals already this season.
Having begun his career with Atletico Paranaense, he also played for club side Santos before moving to Porto and then subsequently to Juventus. The Brazilian's style of play has drawn comparisons to that of Roberto Carlos.
The heart of the matter
With Kolarov and Clichy both in their 30’s, Pep has recognised the need to freshen up his defence and an immediate bid for the Brazilian is quite a possibility. Mourinho, on the other hand, may just pull out from the race as he revealed yesterday that he is happy with the defensive options available to him.
The Portuguese emphasised that he is satisfied with the performances of the central defensive duo of Jones and Rojo whose form have picked up in the last few games.
As a result, a possible move for Benfica’s Lindelof may be dead in the water as well. Mourinho has Luke Shaw and Daley Blind as his first choice options for left fullback and at certain points this season, Matteo Darmian has deputised fairly decently in the position.
The left full-back position has been problematic for Mourinho this season and the early season criticism of Shaw means that Mourinho would prefer the much defensive minded Alex Sandro as he looks to shore up the United defence.
Given the lack of Champions League football, there may be a reluctance on the Brazilian’s part to join United. Add to that the fact that Sandro will be cup-tied if he moves to either of the Manchester clubs and this might hinder a move for the full-back.
A move to any of the Manchester clubs would be quite a bold one for the Brazilian. Compared to Manchester United, Manchester City have a greater chance of getting the full-back. However, as earlier reiterated the player is cup-tied and thus a winter move is unlikely.
Nevertheless, if the 25-year-old does continue this upward trend in his form, he will surely be a summer target for a lot of European clubs.
Last season he was restricted to only 15 appearances due to injuries and still managed 3 assists and a match rating of 7.45. This season those figures have improved dramatically to attract the attention of the European giants.Published 31 Dec 2016, 12:41 IST