United to miss out on left back target as Roma move?

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Manchester United could be set to miss out on full back Faouzi Ghoulam, with Serie A side Roma leading the chase for the Algerian.

The 22 year old Saint-Etienne defender has recently been linked with a move to Old Trafford, with Patrice Evra approaching his 33rd birthday, and having had bids rejected for Everton left back Leighton Baines. Ghoulam is six years younger than Baines, and whilst he has never played in the Premier League, his displays in Ligue 1 have attracted the interest of many teams, including AC Milan and Torino in Italy.

However, Ghoulam has reiterated his desire to stay with Saint-Etienne for the rest of the season, especially after seeing a proposed summer move to Torino collapse.

"I would love to finish the season here now, it has been a very difficult time for me in the summer with the Torino affair. However, things go quickly in football so we never know what is next. Manchester United? You are always flattered when such a big club is linked with you but I do not want to dream, the reality is to give 100 per-cent for St Etienne and see what will happen next."

And now, with teams swarming around him, it seems Roma have jumped the queue ahead of the January transfer window. Manager Rudi Garcia had great success in France with a number of clubs, but predominantly with Lille, and looks set to use his knowledge of Ligue 1 to improve his new side.

Current left back Federico Balzaretti is almost 32 and underwhelming anyway, whilst Brazilian Dodo is incredibly inexperienced. Ghoulam would be able to move to the Italian capital and establish himself as the first choice immediately, which is something that he may not get at Manchester United.

image: © Damien Cansse

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