Manchester United are interested in 26 year old Nice central midfielder Jean Michaël Seri as they look to boost their options in an area lacking strength in depth for Jose Mourinho’s side.
The Ivory Coast midfielder agreed a deal in principle with Barcelona last summer, however a deal fell through due to the Spanish club pulling out late on. PSG have also been targeting the player, however Financial Fair Play rules meant that a move to the French champions could not be completed last summer. Seri now has just 18 months left on his Nice contract and it seems unlikely that an extension will be signed. Any deal for the player would likely take place in the summer, with buyers in a bargaining position as there will only be one year left on the player’s contract.
Nice are expected to demand a fee of around £35 million, a similar figure to what was agreed with Barcelona previously. This would represent good value for one of the most highly coveted central midfielders in Ligue 1. Both Manchester clubs retain an interest in the midfielder, who was recently also been linked with Everton and Paris Saint Germain. United have sent scouts to monitor Seri’s performances in recent weeks, and then they were in attendance for Nice’s 2-2 draw against Monaco last week as Seri claimed an assist for a Mario Balotelli goal.
If Manchester United were to go ahead and sign the 26 year old, it would be another significant blow for Pep Guardiola, who sees the player as a longer term replacement for Fernandinho. United are already this week close to finalising the move for Alexis Sanchez who was another of Guardiola’s targets. The deal for Sanchez is expected to be announced in the coming hours, with Henrikh Mkhitaryan moving to Arsenal in a direct swap deal. Sanchez is likely to be available for United’s trip to Burnley on Saturday.