Back in the summer of 2013, AS Monaco’s Nampalys Mendy had helped the club from the principality win promotion back to Ligue 1, but with his position under threat due to Monaco’s injection of cash, he decided to move on.
That was despite Claudio Ranieri declaring his desire to keep him at the club. Manchester United were linked with a move by The Daily Mail at the time, but in the end he choose to continue his career at OGC Nice.
Two years on, it looks like Mendy will be on the move again, suggest French newspaper L’Equipe, and he could just be the defensive midfielder that Louis van Gaal is looking for.
Two years ago, speaking to the French press, he revealed his decision to snub a move to Old Trafford: "I had other offers, but I did not want to rush things. I want, with my agent and my family, a well-established career."
Mendy has been superb for Nice over the past two seasons, everything they build goes through the diminutive midfielder. He likes to keep things simple, he reads the game extremely well and is a leader on the pitch.
As the lynchpin of the team, he has played 72 league games since arriving in 2013, featuring for over 3000 minutes each season.
Even though his team has struggled at times this campaign, no one in that squad sees more of the ball than Mendy – completing 84.2% of all his passes according to WhoScored.
If United was too big a step for Mendy two years’ ago, it is the kind of move he should be looking at now. He could easily step up to one of the bigger Ligue 1 clubs, but after deciding against a move to England once, it would be difficult to turn it down again.