The Jose Mourinho revolution at Manchester United has started off with the signing of Eric Bailly from Spanish side Villarreal, in a deal believed to be in the region of around £30million.
With Bailly having appeared in only 46 professional matches so far in his career, it is understandable that not too many in England were aware of the defender and his hefty price tag has certainly brought about a certain level of skepticism.
Former Liverpool star Mark Lawrenson has been following Bailly very closely though and has stated that the 22-year-old will become a top player at Manchester United.
The 59-year-old stated that Bailly has all the requirements in his repertoire to become a hit in the Premier League and added that his price tag is fair; especially considering that Everton defender John Stones is valued around almost £50million.
Lawrenson said, "I think he's got a real chance of being a top player eventually. We saw him that night at Villarreal versus Liverpool. He missed the second-leg with a hamstring injury. You talk about the fee but what's [John] Stones going to go for? And this is a guy who has generally made a mistake every two or three games in the Premier League.”
"The fella Bailly – the great thing about him is that he's got a great physique; he is lightning, lightning quick. So, in that position, it allows you to make a mistake but to get that mistake back. I don't see any problems. He is very physical, and if you sign a centre-back for the Premier League he has to be physical."
Bailly will surely be under a lot of pressure to prove his worth at Old Trafford but it has to be said that Mourinho is a master at identifying quality central defenders and there is every possibility that the 22-year-old will flourish in England under the tutelage of the Portuguese tactician.