Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s purchase of a 25% stake in Manchester United will bring direction to the club off the pitch, but it should have a domino effect on it as well.
One of the main effects fans are curious about is how the relationship with OGC Nice, Sir Jim’s other club, works.
If recent reports are to be believed, they won’t have to wait long to get a look at it.
Journalist Rudy Galetti reports that United are in pole position to sign OGC Nice’s Jean-Clair Todibo.
The Frenchman is the club’s main defensive target and the Ligue 1 club is also open to allowing the defender to leave in January provided a satisfactory offer arrives.
The price reported to be acceptable to Nice is around £50 million, and with Chelsea needing to sell first to comply with FFP, the way could be clear for United.
— Rudy Galetti (@RudyGaletti) January 1, 2024
Furthermore, Tottenham, who were also interested in the player, are already making a move on United’s other target, Genoa’s Radu Dragusin, taking them out of the running.
Therefore, there really is no reason why United shouldn’t land the player when considering all factors, within, as well as outside the club as even outside England, clubs like Barcelona are struggling for funds.
Todibo looks like the ideal profile of defender for the team Erik ten Hag wants to build.
He’s a passing metronome at the back, and is deceptively agile in recovery tackles as well as physical duels.
With United reportedly making a decision to not extend Raphael Varane’s contract, which expires in the summer, it could be a case of one Frenchman out, and another one in.
Todibo, in many ways, is of a similar profile to Varane. In fact, Varane’s best days might be behind him, while Todibo is just ascending to the peak of his career.
Even if January comes too soon for a move of this magnitude to happen, United would be wise to agree a deal in principle with the French club for transfer to happen in the summer.
This opportunity has come at the perfect time for United with their ownership situation and completing it will be the easiest win of Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s early tenure at the club.