Marseille ‘make contact with Eric Bailly’ over loan deal but Man Utd will only let defender leave on permanent transfer


MARSEILLE have reportedly made contact with Manchester United over a loan deal for Eric Bailly.

But the Red Devils are said to be only willing to let the defender Bailly leave on a permanent transfer.

L’Equipe claims Marseille are looking for a centre-back after failing to keep hold of Arsenal’s William Saliba.

And Bailly, 28, has emerged as their top target.

The Ivorian is entering his seventh season at Old Trafford.

But he has never been able to nail down a regular starting spot, featuring just seven times last term.

Manager David Moyes has called on West Ham’s hierarchy to freshen up the squad before the transfer window shuts at the end of August.

The Hammers lost 2-0 at home to champions Manchester City on Sunday and travel to Nottingham Forest next.

talkSPORT understands a new centre-back could be brought in by then, with Bailly and Kehrer on the club’s shortlist.

Ivory Coast defender Bailly is not part of United’s plans this season and Germany international Kehrer could be available on a cut-price deal with his contract in Paris due to expire next summer.

Neither player is expected to cost a great deal more than the £15m being recouped for Diop from Fulham.

Roma have been linked with a move for Bailly, as have Italian rivals AC Milan.

Fulham also looked at Bailly before swooping for West Ham’s Issa Diop.

And the Hammers themselves are now considering Bailly as Diop’s replacement.

However, Marseille are now thought to be leading the race, with Bailly keen on making the move and playing in the Champions League.

But the French side only want him on loan for now, with an option to make things permanent if things go well.

That won’t fly with United though, who would rather keep hold of Bailly unless they can get rid of him for a permanent transfer fee.

The ex-Villarreal man is now fifth choice following the arrival of Lisandro Martinez.

But a compromise could be worked out between now and the end of the transfer window.

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