The Manchester United fans were absolutely delighted in the Transfer Tavern on Monday evening after they witnessed their side grab a late winner to conclude a thrilling encounter at Selhurst Park.
Jose Mourinho’s side were far from their best against Crystal Palace on Monday evening, but despite their lack of fluidity, they managed to fight back from 2 goals down to claim a 3-2 victory courtesy of a last-gasp screamer from an unlikely hero Nemanja Matic. Manchester United’s result ensures that they remain ahead of Liverpool in 2nd place with just 9 fixtures to play, although they remain 16 points adrift of their local-rivals Manchester City.
Despite recording victory in the capital, Mourinho would have been far from content with the sloppiness of his side across the pitch, particularly in defence where they completely switched off and allowed Patrick van Aanholt to run through on David De Gea’s goal completely unchallenged before he doubled Palace’s advantage.
Palace’s second goal simply underlined Mourinho’s need to bolster his defensive options next summer and according to Diariogol, the Portuguese manager has already spoken to the clubs hierarchy regarding his wish list next summer. According to the report from the Spanish media outlet, Mourinho has identified Real Madrid’s Raphael Varane (valued at £36 million by Transfermarkt) as the final piece of his defensive jigsaw.
Considering the level of quality that United can currently boast in defensive positions, the club should consider a move for Varane as something of a necessity next summer. A defender of Varane’s calibre would install solidity back into United’s defence and enable The Red Devils to go head-to-head with Manchester City for the Premier League title next season.
United have plenty of central defenders in their ranks at this current moment in time, but few have consistently demonstrated a level of performance which suggests the club should avoiding investing in Varane. Eric Bailly has arguably been United’s most impressive central defender since he was signed from Villarreal in the summer of 2016, but his struggle with injuries this season have stagnated his progress.
However, once Bailly has returned to full-fitness, the Ivory Coast international could form a formidable partnership with Varane, so Ed Woodward should begin making enquiries into Varane’s availability in the near future to lay the foundations for a potential summer deal.