Jose Mourinho is keen to sign an experienced centre-back to strengthen Manchester United's back line, which is relatively inexperienced at the moment with Chris Smalling being the only accomplished defender at his disposal. The Englishman is prone to mistakes and the Portuguese manager is keen to pair him with a senior central defender ahead of his first season at Old Trafford.
The former Chelsea and Real Madrid manager made 22-year-old centre-back Eric Bailly his first signing from Villarreal. However, Mourinho is not convinced the young defender, who had just over one season of first-team football in Spain, can handle the pressure of playing at the top level on a regular basis.
According to the Daily Record, the Red Devils boss is looking to bring in a more experienced centre-back with whom he can pair either Smalling, Bailly or Phil Jones. The latter has been given another chance to prove his worth, after he missed most of last season through injury. He also has Daley Blind, who played most of last season at centre-back and Marcos Rojo, but it is believed the duo will be allowed to leave to make room for a new signing.
Mourinho's title winning sides at Chelsea, Inter Milan and Real Madrid were always built with a strong defensive backbone and he is keen to build a strong one at Old Trafford as he chases silverware in his first season. Raphael Varane was high on the manager's wish list, but the French defender rejected a chance to move to United and committed his future to the Spanish capital club.
Although the France international is not an experienced campaigner, he has been with Real Madrid for the past five years after Mourinho signed him from Lens in 2011. Despite struggling to break into the first-team on a regular basis due to the presence of Pepe and Sergio Ramos ahead of him, he is keen to remain and fight for his place at the Santiago Bernabeu under his idol Zinedine Zidane.
"Yes, I want to stay here this year. I think everything is here for me to continue my progression," Varane said, as quoted by ESPN FC.
"I feel loved by the club and by the fans who have always treated me almost like a youth product. The best players are here, everything is here for me to keep improving and I'm really enthusiastic about improving. The best is still ahead of me."
"In life you take decisions, I spoke with the club, I spoke with Zizou and I trust that I'm going to keep improving here and the best of me is still to come," he added.