Barcelona are desperate to get their financial debt down to a reasonable level. One of the biggest drivers of said debt is the exorbitant amount the club pays in wages.
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As a result, one of the quickest ways to drive down the wage bill is to offload certain players who are costing the club too much money. One of those players is center-back Samuel Umtiti.
Manchester United could make a move for Barcelona’s Samuel Umtiti.
The report claims the Red Devils believe he could be a bargain given the Catalans’ financial situation and the fact they’ve been desperately trying to move Umtiti now for a couple of seasons.
Russian side Zenit St. Petersburg had shown interest in the Frenchman but he is unconvinced about a move to Russia and would prefer to stay in Europe.
Umtiti was also rumored with a move away during the winter transfer window. However, the best Barcelona could hope for was a loan but no club was willing to take on his wages.
He’s been manager Ronald Koeman’s fourth, sometimes fifth, choice center-back this season. With Gerard Pique healthy, Umtiti’s playing time has been significantly diminished. Even more so than before.
He also hasn’t exactly impressed when given an opportunity. He played in Barcelona’s 2-1 loss to Granada and was left ball-watching during the visitor’s winning goal. While he didn’t have a poor game, he certainly didn’t do enough to convince Koeman that he deserves more minutes.
His injury history is likely to scare some teams away but he has managed to stay relatively fit. He’s only 27 so he is still going to be an attractive option for anyone in need of defensive help. Not to mention the fact he is a World Cup winner with France.
Interested parties, like Manchester United, may take a flyer on him and hope that he’s left his injuries behind him and that all he needs is consistency and, perhaps, a change of scenery.