By Noel Whelan

30th Jul, 2022 | 11:30am

Eric Bailly could complete move within days after near-£60m Man United deal agreed - pundit

Noel Whelan has claimed Eric Bailly could depart Man United “within the next week or two” after Lisandro Martinez’s arrival.

The former Leeds striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the 28-year-old is “surplus to requirements” following the Argentina international’s signing.

Man United confirmed the £56.7million arrival of Martinez on Wednesday (27 July) – with the centre-back signing a five-year deal with the option of a sixth.

The Athletic reported on Thursday (28 July) that Bailly and Ethan Laird are attracting interest – with the former wanted by AC Milan and Jose Mourinho’s Roma.

The 46-time Ivory Coast international, who has been plagued with injury problems during his time at Old Trafford, is contracted until June 2024.

Bailly has played just 113 times for Man United since joining from Villarreal in 2016.

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Whelan insisted an exit for the centre-back “makes perfect sense”.

“I think Martinez coming in will just allow that deal to go through and get Bailly out the door,” he told Football Insider‘s Ewan Kingsbury.

“He’s probably surplus to requirements right now, and now they’ve got the main man in from Ajax it gives them the opportunity to start listening to offers.

“It makes perfect sense. They need to cover their backs until a deal is confirmed and now it is, I’m sure it won’t take long for the right offer to come in.

“You can see him going within the next week or two.”

Martinez, Harry Maguire, Victor Lindelof, and Raphael Varane are now all seemingly ahead of Bailly in the Man United pecking order.

The Red Devils take on Brighton in their first game of the 2022-23 season on 7 August.

In other news, Kieran Maguire cites “phenomenal” Son Heung-min as Man United deal agreed.