Report: Manchester United Ready to Make £40m Move for Faouzi Ghoulam in January

Rob Blanchette@@_Rob_BFeatured ColumnistOctober 13, 2018

NAPLES, ITALY - OCTOBER 01:  Faouzi Ghoulam of SSC Napoli in action during the Serie A match between SSC Napoli and Cagliari Calcio at Stadio San Paolo on October 1, 2017 in Naples, Italy.  (Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images)
Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images

Manchester United are reportedly interested in Napoli full-back Faouzi Ghoulam and could swoop with a £40 million bid in January.

The Algeria international has been a star performer in Serie A in recent years, but his capture would put incumbent Red Devils left-back Luke Shaw's long-term prospects at Old Trafford in doubt.

Italian outlet Radio Kiss Kiss Naples (via CalcioMercato.com) reported the Red Devils could make a huge offer for the left-back in an attempt to strengthen their options in the winter (h/t Rebecca Coles of The Sun).

An effort to sign Ghoulam would not have been a surprise in the summer with Shaw on the fringes of the first team, but the England international has been one of United's few success stories of the campaign.

United manager Jose Mourinho has brought Shaw out of the cold this term and he has performed well, but his contract expires next summer.

GENOA, ITALY - OCTOBER 25: Player of SSC Napoli Faouzi Ghoulam vies with Genoa CFC players Darko Lazovic and Luca Rigoni during the Serie A match between Genoa CFC and SSC Napoli at Stadio Luigi Ferraris on October 25, 2017 in Genoa, Italy.  (Photo by Fra
Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images

Per Coles, Ghoulam has been recently tracked by Premier League champions Manchester City and Liverpool, with Chelsea also interested in reuniting him with former Napoli boss Maurizio Sarri.

The Algerian has yet to make an appearance this season after struggling with a knee injury suffered in the 2017/18 season, but he was a regular starter with the Partenopei before the issue. He made 26 league starts in the 2016/17 season, and at 27 he is the type of experienced player the Special One craves.

Ghoulam's potential arrival could damage Shaw's hopes at United while Mourinho remains at the helm.

The 23-year-old was one of the best prospects in Europe as a teenager at Southampton, but injury and poor form have cost him vital minutes in the starting XI.

Shaw recently thanked supporters for sticking with United after the team fought back from 2-0 down to beat Newcastle United 3-2 at home in the Premier League:

However, there is the chance Mourinho could team up Shaw and Ghoulam, with the Napoli star playing ahead of the defence.

The player was directly involved in five goals in Serie A and Europe for Napoli last term in just 17 appearances, underlining his attacking nature on the wing.

Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial typically opt to cut inside from the left wing, rarely crossing the ball for others in the middle.

The failure to sign Ivan Perisic from Inter Milan in the 2017 summer transfer window was a bitter blow for Mourinho, with Romelu Lukaku crying out for support from both flanks.

Ghoulam and Shaw could be an intriguing combination, but with Shaw's contract close to expiring, United could be looking to secure the Englishman's replacement.

Related

    Ozil: This Is 'Sexy Football' from Arsenal

    World Football logo
    World Football

    Ozil: This Is 'Sexy Football' from Arsenal

    Matt Jones
    via Bleacher Report

    B/R Live: Get Hyped for Man Utd vs. Juventus (🇺🇸 Only)

    Manchester United logo
    Manchester United

    B/R Live: Get Hyped for Man Utd vs. Juventus (🇺🇸 Only)

    Br
    via Br

    Lindelof Out, Bailly In? Predicted Man Utd XI's vs. Juventus

    Manchester United logo
    Manchester United

    Lindelof Out, Bailly In? Predicted Man Utd XI's vs. Juventus

    via men