Barcelona defender and Manchester United target Samuel Umtiti could be available for just €60m this summer due to Financial Fair Play regulations precluding the possibility of a new deal being signed, according to reports.
The French defender has a release clause of €60m and Barcelona chief are determined to significantly raise that figure following a superb campaign under Ernesto Valverde.
However, following the signing of Philipe Coutinho for €160m over the January transfer window, FFP stipulates that the Catalan giants cannot pay out on a new deal for Umtiti this season.
And according to Goal’s Kris Voakes, Umtiti and representatives have reached a “gentleman’s agreement” over a new deal, with the already negotiated terms to be signed off on the first day of next season, but Man United will nonetheless have a window of opportunity to prize him away from the Nou Camp.
Barcelona remain unbeaten in La Liga this season, have more clean sheets than any other side in the top five European leagues, and remain on course to win the treble. And anybody who has watched them over the last few months will tell you that Umtiti has played a monumental part in guiding La Blaugrana to that position.
There aren’t many better in the business for when it comes to positioning and moving the ball out from the back. Umtiti’s brilliance is often very subtle insofar as the way he receives a pass, competes for a header, or even boots a clearance is done in a way that looks normal but, on closer inspection, actually entails some remarkable bodily positioning that you can tell he has meticulously worked on.
Put simply: he makes defending – usually messy, imperfect, full of broken ankles and red cards – look like a science. And if United have a chance to pinch him in the summer, they cannot think twice.