Barnstorming Bakayoko latest Man United UCL carrot

Monaco’s rise this season has been mightily impressive. Les Monegasques have made it to the last eight of the Champions League and are sitting atop Ligue 1, both of which have demanded a herculean effort in overcoming the financial barriers that stand between them and their rivals on both fronts.

Monaco are by no means paupers, yet this is a side punching above its weight in terms of outlay, and one of the fundamental cogs in their success is Tiemoue Bakayoko. The Frenchman’s all-action, box-to-box style has won him many plaudits and led to interest from across Europe, with some reports even claiming that Chelsea have agreed terms with the 22-year-old.

However, the Manchester Evening News have thrown Manchester United’s name into the mix, stating that, despite the rumours, the Blues have not yet tied up a summer deal. Alas, there’s a hair in the soup in that Champions League football is essential in attracting Bakayoko to Old Trafford. As if there wasn’t motivation enough to get back to the top table…

A mix of physicality and technique, Bakayoko’s Ligue 1 stats this season show the sort of player he is. 928 passes with a completed rate of 87% illustrates his ability to keep things ticking over in midfield, while a 68% take-on success score and 65% for aerial duels demonstrate his robust playing style, as does 46 tackles won across 25 games – most of which Monaco have been dominant in – so he’s not fighting fires.

Even though Ander Herrera has impressed, Bakayoko may well be an upgrade and the sort of player Jose Mourinho would surely love to have. Top four or Europa League success, it really is vital, Man United.