Man Utd could make January move for Fonte, as Saints contract talks stall
Southampton captain Jose Fonte has thrown his Saints future into questions, alerting Manchester United to the possibility of signing him in January, according to reports.
The Mirror is reporting that, while Southampton are keen to hold onto their skipper and are ready to offer him a £70,000 per week new deal, the Portuguese central defender has claimed that he has received no offer, sparking speculation that Manchester United could move to sign him in January.
“We haven’t agreed anything, it’s just talks,” Fonte said when questioned about his contract negotiations with Southampton.
United were believed to have been interested in signing the 32-year-old defender late in the summer transfer window. But reports at the time suggested that manager Jose Mourinho was told he would have to sell players to reduce the wage bill before being allowed to make any further purchases.
But with Fonte’s contractual situation up in the air, and with fresh reports linking defender Matteo Darmian with a return to Serie A once the transfer window re-opens, the Red Devils could make their move for Fonte in January.
So far this season, Mourinho has utilised Eric Baily, Chris Smalling and Daley Blind in the centre of defence. And with Phil Jones injured, and Bailly set to compete in the Africa Cup of Nation in January, the Portuguese coach may need to dip into the transfer market to bolster his defensive options.