Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Is Jose On The Brink Of Completing His Man United Make-Over As He Targets This Southampton Star?

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Sourav Bhakat
An ardent sports lover who loves to sleep, eat and watch Manchester City play. In that order.

Manchester United got off to a fairytale start to their Premier League campaign by brushing aside Bournemouth 3-1 after goals from Juan Mata, Wayne Rooney and none other than Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Jose Mourinho couldn’t have hoped for a better start after having admitted to feeling a few butterflies in his stomach before the match! A loss against Bournemouth had ended his Chelsea stint for a second time and the weight and expectations of being touted as the worthy successor after Sir Alex would surely have been playing on his mind.

But with a win under his belt and the customary debut goal from Zlatan, Mourinho-led United look like a force ready to take over the league. With the addition of Paul Pogba yet to come along with full debuts for Henrikh Mkhitaryan and the likes of Rashford warming the bench, promising days are ahead for the Red Devils. But Mourinho is not one to relax and rest on his laurels. He knows the dynamics of the league more than most and how things could change in the matter of a week. Bailly’s performance has given real hope and belief to the management and along with the assured nature of Daley Blind alongside him, together they have nullified Chris Smalling’s absence.

But Mourinho is still unconvinced by Phil Jones and the injury prone nature of Smalling has prompted him to make the signing of another central defender a top-priority. And the name on the top of the list is reportedly Jose Fonte. The Saints captain has been earmarked by Mourinho as someone who can bolster their defence and add depth to the squad along with undoubted quality.

fonte 1 getty


Jose Fonte is a Southampton hero in his own right. The centre-back has been through it all at the St.Mary’s Stadium. He started his professional career with Sporting B, moving to England with Crystal Palace in 2007. In 2010 he signed with Southampton, where he has made over 250 appearances across all competitions.

He started with them, playing in the League One and has been an integral part of the journey as they featured in the Europa League. His determination and dedication finally reaped rewards on the International stage as he got his first cap for Portugal at the age of 30 and he went on to being a part of their history as they won the Euro Cup.

Mourinho knows he would be getting proven Premier League pedigree and impeccable attitude from his fellow countryman. Fonte’s comfort on the ball is his standout feature along with his aerial ability. With Europa League to contend with along with the domestic cup competitions, he will be needing quality back-ups to put pressure on the likes of Smalling and Blind and ensure healthy competition in the team. Though Southampton fans would want their club captain to remain in the team, the opportunity to have a final flourish at the Theatre of Dreams might prove to be too good to turn down for the defender.

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