NICE MOVE Man Utd line up ex-Barcelona star to shore up defence but ‘Newcastle rule’ could stand in way of transfer

A deal between Man Utd and Nice would have to be permanent as Premier League clubs eye a ban that would prevent loan


Posted Tuesday, November 14, 2023 by Thesun.co.uk

MANCHESTER UNITED are considering a move for defender Jean-Clair Todibo from Sir Jim Ratcliffe's Nice.

The Red Devils want to sign a right-sided centre-back in January as Erik ten Hag looks to bolster his defence.

NICE MOVE Man Utd line up ex-Barcelona star to shore up defence but ‘Newcastle rule’ could stand in way of transfer
Jean-Clair Todibo is being eyed up by both Manchester United and Chelsea Credit: Getty

Man Utd made an approach to sign Todibo from the Ligue 1 side in the summer, but the 23-year-old later revealed he "didn’t want to make the wrong choice" having established himself at Nice.

Chelsea have since been linked with the defender as a replacement for the ageing Thiago Silva, 39.

But with Ten Hag keen to add competition at the back, a return move for the Frenchman is being discussed at Old Trafford.

Lisandro Martinez is out until Christmas while Raphael Varane has fallen down the pecking order, with Ten Hag confirming that Harry Maguire is now ahead of the former Real Madrid man.

Ratcliffe's imminent investment at Old Trafford could help make a deal more straightforward - though it would have to be a permanent move.

Premier League clubs are looking to push through a ban on loans between sides which are part of the same ownership group ahead of the January window.

The rule looks set to stop Newcastle from signing Al-Hilal's Ruben Neves on loan due to the Saudi Arabian connection.

Todibo, who has one cap for France, has become a firm fixture in the Nice defence with Ratcliffe's club just one point behind Paris Saint-Germain in the Ligue 1 table.

January planning has been difficult at Old Trafford given the uncertainty over Ratcliffe's £1.3billion investment.

But once the billionaire has secured his 25 per cent stake in the club an overhaul of the recruitment process at Man Utd is set to begin.

A sale of attacking flops, including Jadon Sancho, could help fund some much needed January spending.

The British businessman is keen to ensure no more money is wasted on future signings, meaning his knowledge of Todibo could make the former Barcelona man a front-runner when it comes to defensive targets.

Todibo has made 114 appearances for Nice since joining the French club on loan from Barcelona in February 2021, a move which was made permanent four months later.

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