Man Utd ‘send scouts to watch Barcelona star on international duty’ | Football | Sport

Scouts of Manchester United made a worthwhile trip to Senegal this week to watch Barcelona B star Mikayil Faye. The 19-year-old centre back made his international debut against Gabon on Friday, scoring a spectacular goal to help his side to a 3-0 friendly win.

With Senegal already leading through Aaron Appindangoye’s early own goal, there seemed little danger of a goal before the break when Faye picked up the ball more than 30 yards out. He then unleashed a left footed strike that flew into the top corner, prompting ecstatic celebrations among home fans.

Sadio Mane later made it 3-0 but it was the display of Faye, who is yet to represent the Catalan giants at first team level, that stole the show. And according to Mundo Deportivo, United had representatives at the game to watch the young star, having tracked him for a number of months.

The Red Devils are expected to lose Raphael Varane in the summer, with the French defender out of contract. Lisandro Martinez has also been plagued by injury problems this season, while Victor Lindelof has fallen out of favour under Erik ten Hag.

Those factors are likely to enhance the club’s interest in Faye, with the Dutch boss likely to need defensive reinforcements. Faye is also able to play left back, another factor likely to interest United given Luke Shaw has also endured a string of fitness issues.

But the Premier League outfit face competition if they want to land their target, Barcelona have reportedly already rejected January offers in the region of £13million from French clubs Nice and Lens. Bayer Leverkusen and Inter Milan have also been linked with the former Kustosija starlet.

Faye spent a year with the Croatian club before being picked up by the La Liga giants last summer. He’s since made 24 league appearances for Barca’s second string, scoring three times.

His Senegal bow came after making just 10 appearances for his country at under-17 level. But a distinct lack of senior experience hasn’t appeared to have deterred potential buyers.

United are expected to be active in the transfer market this summer amid fresh investment from Sir Jim Ratcliffe, who completed a minority takeover in December. And the purchase of Faye would indicate long-term thinking from INEOS, who are expected to conduct an overhaul in the transfer window in a bid to turn United into Premier League title contenders again.

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