Right back predicament at Manchester United

Dani Alves Champs League

With Dani Alves signing a new two year deal with newly crowned Champions League winners Barcelona, Manchester United fans remain puzzled at who their long term right back will be. Speculation over Alves’s future had continued to grow as the Brazilian turned down numerous contract offers from Barcelona. The likes of Manchester United, Paris Saint Germain and AC Milan were all dubbed as potential destinations for the former Sevilla man. However, Alves revealed that a chat with the great Lionel Messi convinced him to stay at Barcelona and dashed the hopes of all his potential suitors, including Manchester United. At the age of 32, Dani Alves is still arguably the best right back in world football and would have been a fantastic acquisition for Louis Van Gaal. With a return to the Champions League on the horizon if United manage to overcome a two-legged play off qualifier, a new right back for next season is essential. Fellow Brazilian, Rafael Da Silva seems to be heading for the exit door after falling out of favour with Van Gaal. Rafael has shown promise on numerous occasions but his immaturity and ill-discipline have come back to haunt him on too many occasions. Antonio Valencia has performed commendably as a make shift right back but it’s clear to see that the Ecuadorian is not comfortable when given defensive responsibilities. United haven’t had stability in the right back position since Gary Neville, many players have tried to fill the legendary full backs void but unfortunately failed. With United looking to fight on all fronts next season, here are some right backs that could be the subject of a summer bid:

Nathaniel Clyne


After pinching Luke Shaw from Southampton last summer, United may pursue another full back from the Saints this summer. Nathaniel Clyne has had a terrific year under Ronald Koeman, Clyne’s consistency warranted an England call up. Clyne is reportedly weighing up his options and is reluctant to committing to a long term deal at St Marys. With one year left on his current contract, Manchester United may test Southampton’s resolve. At the age of 24, Clyne still has a lot to learn but his reputation has significantly enhanced after an outstanding season. Liverpool have already had a bid rejected for the former Crystal Palace man. United will face stiff competition if they actively pursue Clyne, Van Gaal is after players that fit his philosophy, Clyne’s defensive discipline and willingness to drive forward makes him an appealing option.

Seamus Coleman


What a bargain Seamus Coleman has turned out to be, David Moyes secured the services of Coleman for a measly £60,000 from Siglio Rovers. The Irish man has gone on to establish himself as one of the most consistent full backs in the Premier League. Manchester United have reportedly been tracking the services of Coleman for a long period of time. At the age of 26, Coleman is arguably entering his prime years. After the transfer shenanigans last summer regarding Maraoune Fellaini and Leighton Baines, Everton will be extremely tough to budge regarding the sale of Coleman. However with the potential lure of Champions League football back at Old Trafford, could Coleman feel it’s time to move on from his beloved Goodison Park.

Dani Carvajal


The 23 year old Spaniard has been ever present for Real Madrid but the £23m signing of Brazilian right back Danilo from Porto could potentially cast doubt over Carvajal’s long term future at the Santiago Bernebau. After spending a year with German giants Bayer Leverkusen, Real Madrid activated the buyback clause and Carvajal became a key part of Carlo Ancelotti’s side. Carvajal will no doubt fight for the right back starting berth but the signing of Danilo may unsettle the young Spaniard. The Real Madrid full back may not be at the top of Van Gaal’s wish list but after losing out on Dani Alves, Manchester United and a host of other top European clubs will closely monitor Dani Carvajal’s situation.

Gregory Van Der Wiel

Van Der Wiel

Van Der Wiel would have arguably been Van Gaal’s first choice right back at the World Cup last summer if it wasn’t for a persistent knee problem that consequently ruled him out of the tournament. Question marks have been raised over Van Der Wiel’s future at PSG, the French giants triggered the clause which allowed them to sign Ivorian full back Serge Aurier. United’s pursuing of a right back has been well document and for Van Der Wiel a potential link up with former manager Louis Van Gaal may prove too tantalising to turn down. The Dutchman may not be United’s number one target but Van Gaal will be well aware of the Paris Saint Germain’s capabilities and deficiencies.

Matteo Darmian


Darmian is arguably one of the most sought after full backs in European football, a string of positive displays for club side Torino and Italy have seen his stock dramatically rise. A host of top European clubs are reportedly chasing his signature however a move to the Premier League may not appeal to the Italian. Torino will be reluctant to lose their prized asset but a reported bid of £25m Euros could be enough to land the young Italian who has two years remaining on his current deal. United will be well aware of Darmian’s remarkable rise but the pace and physical rigours of the Premier League could startle a man who has been used to the Serie A tempo.


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