It’s fair to say that of all the transfers to have fallen short at Man Utd in recent years, it’s that of Eric Bailly that is the toughest to understand. When he moved from La Liga, the Ivorian seemed to tick all the boxes. He was physical, he wasn’t afraid of a challenge, and most importantly, he settled in the Premier League quickly.
However, all of a sudden, it all just went wrong. A quick start was followed by a quick regression, and he’s never really been able to recover. Injuries have played their part, sure, and maybe Jose Mourinho’s man management wasn’t the best for him, but you have to just wonder – where did it all go wrong?
He looked so promising, and he looked to be the solution to Man Utd’s defensive problems, but in truth, he’s caused more issues than he’s solved. His presence in the team, or rather the lack thereof, has meant that players like Phil Jones and Chris Smalling have returned to the fore – and they aren’t good enough either.
The fact of the matter is that maybe Bailly is running out of time. If he doesn’t improve between now and the end of the season, with Man Utd still having 4 games left in the Premier League, maybe it’s time for the Red Devils to give up. If he’s not getting better, and he’s not showing signs of improvement, maybe the only way is down for him.
Perhaps a new club is what he needs to get his career back on track. Make no mistake, there’s a gap for him in this team, and if he steps up, he’ll undeniably play a key part. But he’s got only a few matches to show what he hasn’t been able to for the best part of a few seasons.
If he’s not going to play, or perhaps if he’s not physically fit enough to play, the least he can do is attempt to show the boss his worth in training.