Di Lorenzo eyed as Wan Bissaka backup


Manchester United are believed to be interested in Italy star Giovanni Di Lorenzo, as they look to add an experienced right-back to their squad this summer.

United‘s squad is gradually coming together, with a new contract for Edinson Cavani and the impending arrival of Jadon Sancho meaning they look well stocked in the final third. It’s a different story further back, however, as they have no real competition for right-back Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

He was a virtual ever-present for United last season, starting 34 times in the Premier League and playing every one of their European games on the way to the Europa League final.

Timothy Fosu-Mensah’s departure in January meant that only youngster Brandon Williams was available to cover. But rather than keep him around, it appears United are about to send him to Southampton on loan, and source competition for Wan-Bissaka from elsewhere.

The longstanding target has been Kieran Trippier, but negotiations with Atletico Madrid haven’t exactly been fruitful; they recently laughed off United’s opening bid and are believed to be holding out for more than £20m.

So where does that leave us? Well, at Wembley, where United scouts are reportedly heading to watch Di Lorenzo play against England.

The Napoli right-back has thoroughly impressed at Euro 2020

so far. While Alessandro Florenzi was Roberto Mancini’s preferred starter to begin with, Di Lorenzo has grown into the tournament and played every minute of their knockout matches.

The only game he didn’t appear in at any stage was the dead-rubber group encounter with Wales, and it seems interest in his signature is growing after a strong season at Napoli.

It is being reported by The Star that United see him as a viable alternative to Trippier, and feel that negotiating with Napoli may be an easier task. A fee of £17m has been mooted, and at 27, he looks like better value for money than the England man.

Di Lorenzo has been something of a late bloomer in his career. As recently as 2017, he was playing third-tier football with Matera Calcio, but a move to Empoli put him on Napoli’s radar and he signed for the Partenopei ahead of the 2019/20 season.

He made his international debut for Italy shortly after and it has all been upwards from there for the energetic full-back, who looks dead certain to start against England at Wembley in the final of Euro 2020 on Sunday.

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