Manchester United’s chance at redemption arrives on Thursday as they welcome Real Betis to Old Trafford for the first leg of their Europa League Round of 16 tie.
Erik ten Hag has promised fans that the players are desperate to bounce back and it is important that they get Sunday’s freak result out of the system considering they still have a chance of adding two cup competitions to their Carabao Cup triumph.
However, one thing that will be slightly concerning for the manager is Diogo Dalot‘s form post the World Cup. He was almost infallible in the first half of the season but his form has taken a nosedive post Qatar.
ETH needs Dalot back to his best
Aaron Wan-Bissaka‘s resurgence has helped matters but Ten Hag will be hoping that the Portuguese manages to refind the form that forced the United manager to make him the de-facto right back this season.
Despite Wan-Bissaka’s superior defensive skills, Dalot showed he had worked on that part of his game and he is much better going forward compared to the former Crystal Palace star.
— United Radar (@UnitedRadar) March 8, 2023
His early season form had prompted interest from a number of European heavyweights considering that his contract was set to end in 2024.
According to The Sun, “Manchester United are in advanced talks with Diogo Dalot over a new long-term deal. The Red Devils are keen to tie the 23-year-old down for several more years after impressing this campaign.
“United are also wary of interest from Real Madrid and Barcelona, who are admirers of Dalot and are ready to pounce should an agreement on a new deal fall flat.”
Contract talks advanced despite Real, Barca interest
Dalot was close to leaving the club under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer but Ten Hag managed to get the best out of him, with the Portugal international starting 17 Premier League games and six Europa League outings.
The right-back was signed by Jose Mourinho back in 2018 from Porto for £19million and his contract was initially set to run out this summer before United triggered a one-year extension before Christmas.
During a fan event, the full-back had expressed how happy he was in Manchester and that he wanted to stay here for the long-term.
“We are in a position to say that we are negotiating and seeing how both parties will benefit.
“But it is no secret that I am happy to be here, so we will see how things go.”