It’s been an amazing year of progress for Eric Bailly and he has thanked all fans of Villareal, Ivory Coast and Manchester United for supporting him along the way.
By January 2016, Bailly had established himself as a key figure for La Liga side Villareal and it was his performances for the Yellow Submarine which earned him a move to Manchester United in the summer. Jose Mourinho plucked him out and most Man United fans will be honest in saying we hardly knew anything about him.
But we certainly do now. Bailly’s no nonsense approach to defending built a fierce reputation immediately and he looked like the real deal from the offset. We definitely missed him in January when he went to the African Cup of Nations with Ivory Coast but now he’s back and ready to rumble.
In January last year, I debuted on Instagram. In less than a year my life has changed a lot and many great things happened. It's been a pleasure to be able to share with all of you. You're already 1 MILLION. 😄 THANKS everyone!! 🎉 En janvier dernier, j'ai créé mon compte Instagram. En moins d'un an, beaucoup de choses ont changées et j'ai vécu de grands moments. Ça a été un plaisir de pouvoir partager tout ça avec vous. 😄 Vous êtes déjà 1 million ! MERCI à tous !! 🎉
Bailly has brought an edge to our defence which hadn’t been there since Nemanja Vidic left the club. He’s a raw powerhouse but somebody who has superb timing as well, so he doesn’t recklessly lunge into tackles like an early version of Phil Jones – he’s spot on.
Mourinho’s scouts did so well to bring in Bailly because very few, if any, saw him as the centre-back to help solve our defensive problems but he’s gone on to do just that. The best part of all? He’s only 22. That’s so young for a centre-back and Bailly is years away from his peak as a player; if he’s this good at 22, how good can he be when he is 27?