Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has revealed the reason behind the signing of Ivorian international Eric Bailly.
The 22-year-old was the Portuguese first signing at Old Trafford and the former Real Madrid manager gave an insight on the player’s strengths as he expresses confidence that the defender can succeed at the club.
“I could compare him with some players I’ve had previously but I don’t want to do it because obviously the other boys play for other clubs,” Mourinho said in an exclusive interview with MUTV.
“But he is a player who we believe has all the attributes. He is very strong physically and very fast. It’s not so easy to find a fast player when you have quite a big body; he’s a heavy guy, a tall boy who’s really fast.
“He comes from a Spanish culture where the first phases are important so technically he’s very good. For some periods, he played right-back and, because playing in the right-back position demands more from an attacking point of view, it’s good for a centre-back to play some periods as a right-back.
“My only question mark at the moment is one I have to help him delete – the question mark of someone who has never played at such a big club with so many responsibilities and so many expectations.
“So is Eric ready to come here and start performing from day one? I don’t know. It is a question mark but my job is to delete that question mark as soon as possible and give him the stature, brain and personality to play for Manchester United.”
Bailly made 47 appearances for Villarreal since joining on 29 January 2015. He has played 15 times for his country and was part of the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations-winning team, having appeared in all six matches during the competition.