With the signing of Paul Pogba now complete, Jose Mourinho has reportedly turned his attentions to bringing in another central defender before the transfer window closes.
Fonte admitted last week that he was “flattered” by news of Man United’s interest, but insisted that he was focused on his current endeavours at Southampton.
Nevertheless, Mourinho is keen on bringing the Portuguese stalwart to Old Trafford and will need to offload one of his defenders in order to complete the deal – the most likely candidate being Marcos Rojo.
Since arriving at Old Trafford in 2014, Rojo has always been an ambiguous figure: not completely out of his depth but certainly unqualified to be a regular in United’s back-line.
In relation to Fonte, his potential replacement, he matches him in physical stature – but the similarities end there. Fonte has played in England for eight years, featuring regularly and developing all the time. His positional sense, temperament and ability to read the game is far more astute.
After almost three years, Rojo has failed to endear himself to the United faithful, and seeing him leave the club with Fonte coming in the other direction would be a notable upgrade.