Manchester United are on the verge of agreeing a deal to sign Villarreal centre-back Eric Bailly, according to the Guardian.
The report states United have offered £15m for the Ivory Coast international, but the fee could eventually reach £30m due to numerous performance-related clauses.
However, the two clubs are understood to still be negotiating over the payment’s structure.
22-year-old Bailly joined Villarreal in January 2015 as a replacement for Gabriel Paulista, who had moved to Arsenal.
The former Espanyol player is physically imposing, strong, fast and a great tackler of the ball. He’s exactly the type of player Mourinho likes and has all the right attributes to become a pillar in United’s defense.
Mourinho seems determined to sign a new centre-back this summer and Bailly could be the perfect partner for Smalling.
The chances of it going through seem very high. It’s come out of the blue as the media was focused on reporting United’s interest in Manolas, Stones and Marquinhos.
With United also reportedly set to complete the deal to bring Zlatan Ibrahimovic to Old Trafford, the club could unveil their first two signings of the summer before the start of the European Championship.
Mourinho has always insisted on getting the signings in as early as possible and it seems like Ed Woodward is doing everything possible to make it happen.