Man Utd ‘in talks’ with Nice left-back; Wolves defender also on shortlist

Manchester United are ‘in talks’ with Nice left-back Melvin Bard over a potential transfer, with reports also linking the 13-time Premier League winners with Wolverhampton Wanderers captain Max Kilman.

The Red Devils are preparing for their first transfer window since INEOS took a minority shareholding in the club, and have been linked with a number of defenders.

Whether Erik ten Hag stays on as United manager remains to be seen, but the club’s recruitment team are busy identifying targets who can strengthen a squad that is likely to see significant turnover in the summer.

Bard already plays under INEOS ownership in France and has been a standout player for Nice in their impressive Ligue 1 campaign. The Evening Standard report that contact has been made over a potential switch to Old Trafford, with the 23-year-old’s value potentially set to rise further if he’s called up to France’s squad for Euro 2024.

Were a move to materialise, Bard would prove strong competition for places for Luke Shaw and Tyrell Malacia, who have both been plagued by injuries this season.

Meanwhile, The Times report that Wolves skipper Kilman is on a shortlist of centre-backs who could arrive in Manchester amid uncertainty over the futures of Raphael Varane and Harry Maguire.

Lisandro Martinez clutches his knee after clashing with Vladimir Coufal in Man Utd's FA Cup tie with West HamLisandro Martinez clutches his knee after clashing with Vladimir Coufal in Man Utd's FA Cup tie with West Ham

Lisandro Martinez has been a big miss for United in central defence / Michael Regan/GettyImages

United have also been hamstrung by two significant injuries to Lisandro Martinez, with Kilman, or any other defender’s arrival, potentially aimed at providing Ten Hag with a more stable core of players to choose from.

Wolves turned down a £30m bid from Napoli for Kilman last summer – he was subsequently named club captain and signed a new five-year contract – and it’s thought their stance on a potential sale hasn’t changed despite their need to raise funds in order to meet Premier League Profitability and Sustainability Rules.

90min understands that United also admire Everton centre-back Jarrad Branthwaite, who recently earned a first England call-up, while they remain interested in Bard’s teammate at Nice, Jean-Clair Todibo, despite concerns over his lofty price tag.

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