Manchester United Summer Transfer Window Keep or Cut: Defenders

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Despite the result today, in which Cristiano Ronaldo single-handedly saved Manchester United, the side have still been playing like they’re checked out of the season. The win, plus Arsenal and Spurs losing, re-opened the door to a potential top four finish, but it’s still going to be a long shot at best.

With that in mind, let’s start looking ahead to the summer transfer window. It’s pretty clear that a lot of the players don’t really want to be here, so let’s examine who might be headed for the exit door, and who might be staying, and why.

Harry Maguire

Where do you start? World’s most expensive defender of all-time is a total disasterclass. Massive flop on all levels.

What Would Happen Ideally:

He regains the form that earned him that massive payday, and the Captain’s armband at United.

What Will Likely Happen:

No one who can afford him will want him, especially given that bloated contract. Has to stay put and try to figure it out under Erik ten Hag.

Raphael Varane

Aging and injury-prone, we didn’t see the best that Varane has to offer this season, but he could be back to himself next season.

What Would Happen Ideally:

We see the quality that justified his acquisition, on full display, next season.

What Will Likely Happen:

Maybe he stays fit and comes correct in 2022-23.

Eric Bailly

Holdover from Jose Mourinho era has quality, but isn’t a first team United player. Struggles with injuries have held him back

What Would Happen Ideally:

He gets/stays fit, moves on and United get a good transfer fee for him in return.

What Will Likely Happen:

He still has value and might get in a groove if he catches on elsewhere

Victor Lindelof

He kind of is what he is at this point, and that’s serviceable, mediocre at best.

What Would Happen Ideally:

He steps his game up, and looks like the guy they thought he was going to be under Jose Mourinho.

What Will Likely Happen:

Move him if you can, but really how much can you get? Who would want him?

phil-jones

Phil Jones

Are you kidding me? Why is he still here?

What Would Happen Ideally:

Both parties move on, finally,

What Will Likely Happen:

Put us all our of our misery here.

Luke Shaw

Had a massively roller coaster time at the club so far. Top class when healthy and in form, but he’s out injured for the rest of the season.

What Would Happen Ideally:

He stays fit and looks and plays like how he’s often described on Twitter “the best left back in the world.”

What Will Likely Happen:

Stays put but no need for an extension.

axel tuanzebe

Axel Tuanzebe

Fish-or-cut bait at this point

What Would Happen Ideally:

he moves on and thrives

What Will Likely Happen:

They should be able to find a new home for him and get some value in return

Brandon Williams

Doesn’t belong here, but does belong in the PL.

What Would Happen Ideally:

United get a good transfer fee in return and he becomes a star at a mid-low table club.

What Will Likely Happen:

Hard to say, it all depends on how he gels with Ten Hag.

Diogo Dalot

Doesn’t belong here, but does belong in the PL.

What Would Happen Ideally:

He realizes his potential, or he goes elsewhere and United get a good return.

What Will Likely Happen:

I guess we’ll see.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Was a star at Crystal Palace, but has been rather mediocre lately, after a good start to life at United.

What Would Happen Ideally:

He realizes his potential, or he goes elsewhere and United get a good return.

What Will Likely Happen:

I guess we’ll see.

Manchester United Summer Transfer Window Keep or Cut Series

Midfielders    Attack    Defenders   Goalkeepers

Paul M. Banks is the owner/manager of The Bank (TheSportsBank.Net) and author of “Transatlantic Passage: How the English Premier League Redefined Soccer in America,” as well as “No, I Can’t Get You Free Tickets: Lessons Learned From a Life in the Sports Media Industry.”

He has regularly appeared in WGNSports Illustrated and the Chicago Tribune, and co-hosts the After Extra Time podcastFollow him on Twitter and Instagram

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