Eric Bailly has been seen in good spirits running on a treadmill at Carrington as he continues to take steps towards returning from ankle ligament problems at Manchester United.
The Ivorian hasn’t featured for Man United since early November and Jose Mourinho, speaking ahead of Bailly’s ankle operation in December, noted that he could be out for up to three months.
But ESPN revealed earlier this week that Bailly had impressed medical staff with the extent of his recovery and could be in line to face Sevilla on February 21.
He was videoed working hard on a treadmill on Thursday and, as always, looked to be in bright spirits.
Jose Mourinho has been able to use Victor Lindelof, Chris Smalling and Marcos Rojo as partners for the in-form Phil Jones over the last couple of months but the naked truth is that, without Bailly, United aren’t at full strength.
There is something about the 23-year-old’s presence that does more than repel; it seems to actively discourage attackers from going down particular avenues, aware of his looming presence sending them to the floor.
He has a unique ability to make life painful as well as difficult for any attacker in the Premier League, and supporters will just hope he can stay fit upon returning to action.