Manchester United Interested in £82m Sevilla Defender Jules Kounde

Matt O'Connor-Simpson
Jules Kounde is a target for Manchester United
Jules Kounde is a target for Manchester United / Quality Sport Images/Getty Images

Manchester United are interested in signing Sevilla defender Jules Kounde, who was previously a target for Manchester City.

United have endured a torrid start to the Premier League season, with centre-backs Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof facing particular scrutiny. The Red Devils have conceded 11 goals in their opening three games and the club have been criticised for not strengthening their defence during the summer.

United captain Maguire is under intense scrutiny
United captain Maguire is under intense scrutiny / Alex Livesey/Getty Images

United could make up for this lack of activity when the transfer window reopens, with ESPN (via the Daily Mail) reporting that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has placed Kounde on his wishlist. The 21-year-old made 40 appearances for Sevilla last season, helping Julen Lopetegui record one of the best defensive record in La Liga and secure the Europa League crown, defeating Man Utd on the way to the final.

The Frenchman was heavily linked with United's city rivals last month. However, the Cityzens are understood to have been put off by his £82m release clause, instead opting to spend £64m on Benfica's Ruben Dias. City's loss could be United's gain, with the club hoping to make a move for Kounde in January.

In order to finance the deal, the Red Devils will have to offload some players, with Marcos Rojo one of those in line for the chop. The Argentine spent last season on loan at Estudiantes and hasn't made a Premier League appearance since November 2019.

He was linked with a move to Turkey in the summer but no offer materialised. Rojo United's career does appear to be over though, with the 30-year-old not being named in the Red Devils' Champions League squad alongside Phil Jones.

Jones could also be sold in order to fund a move for Kounde. The England international has never fulfilled his potential at Old Trafford and he has particularly struggled in recent seasons, making just 20 Premier League appearances since the start of the 2018/2019 campaign.