Manchester United have bid £28m for Greek international defender, Kostas Manolas, 25.
Jose Mourinho is determined to strengthen the centre of his defence but Roma have rebuffed his initial attempt, countering with a new contract offer to their defensive lynchpin.
United shared the best defensive record in last season’s Premier League with Tottenham, conceding just 35 goals. Despite this and signing Eric Bailly, 22, for £30m from Villarreal, Mourinho is unimpressed by the lack of depth in the squad that he inherited from Louis Van Gaal.
Manolas is a player the Portuguese knows well. He tried twice to sign him when in charge at Chelsea whilst Arsenal have previously had bids rejected for the player who courted controversy in his native Greece when he left AEK Athens for Olympiacos on a free transfer in July 2012.
Despite United’s interest, Manolas is keen to remain in Rome. Supporters voted him as “The Club’s Best Purchase” in a poll after his debut season for the club in 2014/15 and he missed just one Serie A game last season, scoring twice for I Giallorossi as they finished third behind Napoli and champions, Juventus.
A new contract offer from the club is expected in the next few days but United are expected to test the resolve of both parties by returning with an improved bid.
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