Roma interested in signing Bailly before transfer deadline

AC Milan are still leading the chase to sign Eric Bailly from Manchester United before the transfer deadline, but Roma are also interested.

Foot Mercato claim that Milan’s attempts to sign Bailly are hitting a stumbling block over his wages.

There is also the additional complication of his involvement in the Africa Cup of Nations, with the Ivory Coast facing Egypt on Wednesday afternoon.

And the same report says that there is also interest in Bailly from Roma, although it is not as advanced as Milan’s.

Photo by GLYN KIRK/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Former United boss Jose Mourinho is of course the manager of Roma currently, and he is also the one who brought Bailly to Old Trafford in June 2016.

At the time, Mourinho said: “Eric has the potential to become one of the best around.”

That has not happened yet at Old Trafford, with injuries preventing Bailly becoming a fixture in the side across the course of any one season.

And the report says that Bailly wants to leave, whether it is for Milan or Roma. He has slipped down to fourth in the central defensive pecking order with the arrival of Raphael Varane in the summer.

Photo by Ash Donelon/Manchester United via Getty Images

Wages are always going to be an issue when it comes to United offloading players.

It appears that Anthony Martial’s impending loan move to Sevilla has only motored forward once the Frenchman decided to accept a wage reduction.

Bailly may need to do the same, but getting those delicate and complex negotiations done while he is away on international duty may prove difficult.

At the moment, it seems that Mourinho is not at the front of the queue for Bailly, but his relationship with the player from his time at United may swing the deal in his favour if the finances can be sorted out.

Another of Mourinho’s United signings, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, is currently working under the Portuguese at Roma, and Chris Smalling is also at the club as well.

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Sam Preston is an NCTJ gold standard news and sports journalist who studied with the Press Association. He also has a 2:1 law with French law degree from the University of Birmingham, which included a year studying at Bordeaux Montaigne University. He is an FA Level 1 football coach who appeared on the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire show in 2018 and has also written digital football content and match-day programme pieces for Colchester United, Mansfield Town and Stockport County.