Defender Eric Bailly is celebrating taking an important next step in his career after eight years contracted to Manchester United.

Manchester United confirmed this week that Eric Bailly has left the club, signing on a free transfer with Besiktas.

United did not seek a fee for Bailly, simply content to get the defender’s wages off the books once and for all.

Bailly is now looking forward to a fresh start in the Turkish Super Lig, where Juan Mata spent last season with Galatasaray, and Fred signed this summer with Fenerbahce.

READ: Confirmed Manchester United transfers in, out, loans, releases, youth for 2023/24

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Eric Bailly congratulated

Eric Bailly has lost a lot of his career to injury, or simply being overlooked in favour of other options, with United bosses at times preferring more reliable options. It was a vicious cycle.

The Ivory Coast international now has a fresh start and will be looking to show why he was so highly regarded as a player once he was actually fit and on the pitch.

Patrice Evra was among the Manchester United family to reach out to respond to Bailly’s Instagram message celebrating his move to Besiktas. Fellow Ivorian, Amad, also wished him well on his new adventure.

Eric Bailly games per season

Eric Bailly made a total of 113 appearances for Manchester United since joining in 2016. It is a very low figure for the time he has spent at the club.

Bruno Fernandes has made 189 appearances by comparison, having signed for the club in 2020.

Bailly’s appearances average out at just 14 games per season. Even discounting the one year spent out on loan, it is still just an average 16 games over the seven years.

Let’s hope his stint at Besiktas is a little more productive.

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