According to Mundo Deportivo, in recent days during negotiations with Barcelona for winger Alexis Sanchez, Manchester United also enquired into the availability of first-choice Spain and Barcelona left-back Jordi Alba. However, the Barcelona response was an unambiguous straight forward no.
The report added that Jordi Alba joins Pique, Busquets, Iniesta, Messi and Neymar in the list of players that are considered not for sale by new manager Luis Enrique as he looks to build a legacy at the Catalonian club.
However, Manchester United’s interest in the defender does raise a few questions, especially as the ink has only just dried on the new contract signed by French international Patrice Evra.
We take a look at three questions we believe could arise as news of this interest breaks and look to answer them as best we can?
If the money is available to sign a full-back of Alba’s quality and expense, then why offer Evra a new deal?
In my opinion, the strangest aspect of this reported enquiry is the timing. If Evra’s future was still up for debate, then perhaps it would make sense for Manchester United to look elsewhere; however, it’s only been a couple of weeks since the 33-year-old penned a new deal at United.
And unlike Luke Shaw, the notoriously linked left-back, Alba would come in as an experienced first-choice as opposed to a protégé to eventually take over Evra’s mantel.
Does this enquiry in Alba cast doubt over the Luke Shaw transfer?
As I said above, I could see Luke Shaw signing for United to play a squad rotational role with Patrice Evra for the first season in his United career. However, I certainly can’t see how the Alba and Shaw partnership would work, not to mention the eye-watering cost it would have taken to bring both players to the club.
If Luke Shaw carries a £27million price tag on his shoulders, then would it be unreasonable for Barcelona to want close to double that? I would argue not.
That being said, it’s well reported that terms between Shaw and Manchester United have been agreed and now the confirmation of the deal lies in negotiations between Manchester United and Southampton. So, I don’t believe the Shaw deal is in doubt but the enquiry for Alba does seem extremely strange.