Manchester United Set To Swoop For £72m Defensive Colossus

By timgarrett IN La Liga,Premier League,Transfers - 19:45 Sep 5th 2018

After enduring a nightmare start to the current campaign, suffering defeats against both Brighton and Tottenham, Jose Mourinho will have been delighted both with the result and the manner of his team’s performance in their comfortable 2-0 win at Burnley on Sunday.

Although Romelu Lukaku’s two-goal showing will have pleased the former Chelsea boss, perhaps a first clean sheet of the season will have brought him the most joy, though the Red Devils still have plenty of room for improvement defensively.

According to the latest media reports, the Premier League outfit have not given up hope of strengthening their manager’s hand by bringing in a world-class defender in January, with Atletico Madrid’s Lucas Hernandez thought to be a serious target.

The versatile 22-year-old was a World Cup winner with France during the summer, starting every game for his country at left-back, but the man said to have had a £72m release clause inserted into the new contract he signed in June is equally comfortable in central defence.

A powerful player who relishes the physical side of the game, Hernandez proved his importance to his current employers last term, helping Diego Simeone’s charges to concede 0.3 fewer goals per match on average in the top-flight when he featured:

Lucas Hernandez
CLUB Atletico de MadridAGE 22Y 6M
POS DEFHEIGHT 6FT 0IN
2017/18
WITH
WITHOUT
Matches
27
11
Win %
63%
55%
Draw %
26%
27%
Loss %
11%
18%
Avg Goal for
1.4
1.8
Avg Goals against
0.5
0.8
Mins per goal for
63.9
49.5
Mins per goal against
186.9
110
Shots for per game
7.8
8.6
Points per game
2.1
1.9
Clean sheets
18
5
TOTAL
8
3

In fact, the 22-year-old actually improved his numbers across the board as he became more involved for the Spanish giants during the 2017/18 La Liga campaign, forcing opponents to take 40 more minutes to find the net than had been the case when he played in 2016/17:

Lucas
Hernandez
VLucas
Hernandez
Atletico de MadridAtletico de Madrid
DEF   22Y 6M   6FT 0INDEF   22Y 6M   6FT 0IN
Aug 2016 - May 2018
HERNANDEZ
HERNANDEZ
Starts
13
24
Minutes played
1253
2143
Goals scored
0
Goals with feet
0
Goals with head
0
Assists
0
Clean sheets
9
18
Goals against
10
13
Minutes per goal against
125
165
TOTAL
1
4

Although he has operated primarily as a full-back for both club and country up to this point in his career, it is highly likely that Mourinho would move Hernandez into what appears to be his more natural role in central defence were he to secure a January switch to Old Trafford.

The Acca Smacker

The new season is just a few weeks old, and we've already had thrills and spills galore. From José Mourinho's United toils to Marcelo Bielsa's Yorkshire revolution it has been non-stop entertainment, and we're only just getting started.

KickOff’s unique Acca Smacker is also in full flow, bringing you Predictions, Form Streaks and Form Stats for every market, every match and every top competition. We’ve made building a winning bet so easy it feels like cheating, so why not have a go below and give those bookies a bashing?

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LEAGUES
PRO All Competitions
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Premier LeagueENG
ChampionshipENG
League OneENG
League TwoENG
EFL CupENG
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La LigaESP
Ligue 1FRA
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Win/draw/win
Double chance
Both teams to score
Both teams to score & result
Over/under 1.5
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Over/under 4.5
Team to score first
Fri 21Fri 21st SeptemberPREDICTION %homedrawaway
CHA21 19:45 SKY
Wigan
 v 
Bristol C
19:45 SKY
Home Win
  46%
46%
2.14
23/20
114
46%
3.60
13/5
260
25%
3.60
13/5
260
29%
Saturday 22nd SeptemberSat 22nd SeptemberPREDICTION %homedrawaway
EPL22 15:00
Cardiff
 v 
Man City
15:00
Away Win
  83%
83%
23.00
22/1
2200
5%
9.00
8/1
800
11%
1.17
1/6
-588
83%
EPL22 15:00
Liverpool
 v 
Southampton
15:00
Home Win
  83%
83%
1.20
1/5
-500
83%
7.50
13/2
650
12%
18.00
17/1
1700
5%
EPL22 15:00
Man Utd
 v 
Wolves
15:00
Home Win
  63%
63%
1.57
4/7
-175
63%
4.20
16/5
320
22%
6.50
11/2
550
15%
CHA22 15:00
Nottm Forest
 v 
Rotherham
15:00
Home Win
  61%
61%
1.65
13/20
-154
61%
4.00
3/1
300
23%
6.00
5/1
500
16%
LG122 15:00
Barnsley
 v 
Burton
15:00
Home Win
  60%
60%
1.60
3/5
-167
60%
4.20
16/5
320
22%
6.00
5/1
500
19%
LG122 15:00
Portsmouth
 v 
Wycombe
15:00
Home Win
  59%
59%
1.67
4/6
-149
59%
3.90
29/10
290
22%
5.30
17/4
430
19%
LG122 15:00
Sunderland
 v 
Rochdale
15:00
Home Win
  59%
59%
2.00
1/1
-100
59%
3.80
14/5
280
22%
3.60
13/5
260
19%
EPL22 15:00
Leicester
 v 
Huddersfield
15:00
Home Win
  59%
59%
1.62
8/13
-161
59%
3.90
29/10
290
24%
6.50
11/2
550
17%
EPL22 17:30 BT
Brighton
 v 
Spurs
17:30 BT
Away Win
  58%
58%
5.00
4/1
400
20%
3.90
29/10
290
22%
1.80
4/5
-125
58%
CHA22 15:00
A Villa
 v 
Sheffield We
15:00
Home Win
  57%
57%
1.57
4/7
-175
57%
4.30
33/10
330
24%
6.25
21/4
525
19%
LG222 15:00
Exeter
 v 
Cheltenham
15:00
Home Win
  55%
55%
1.87
20/23
-115
55%
3.80
14/5
280
23%
4.33
10/3
333
22%
LG122 15:00
Charlton
 v 
Plymouth
15:00
Home Win
  54%
54%
1.91
10/11
-110
54%
3.60
13/5
260
24%
4.20
16/5
320
22%
CHA22 15:00
West Brom
 v 
Millwall
15:00
Home Win
  54%
54%
1.75
3/4
-133
54%
3.90
29/10
290
24%
5.00
4/1
400
22%
CHA22 15:00
Leeds
 v 
Birmingham
15:00
Home Win
  54%
54%
1.80
4/5
-125
54%
3.75
11/4
275
23%
4.80
19/5
380
23%
CHA22 15:00
M'Boro
 v 
Swansea
15:00
Home Win
  53%
53%
1.73
8/11
-137
53%
3.80
14/5
280
25%
5.50
9/2
450
22%
CHA22 15:00
Stoke
 v 
Blackburn
15:00
Home Win
  52%
52%
2.10
11/10
110
52%
3.40
12/5
240
24%
3.90
29/10
290
24%
LG122 15:00
Doncaster
 v 
Bradford
15:00
Home Win
  51%
51%
1.72
8/11
-139
51%
3.90
29/10
290
25%
5.10
4/1
410
24%
LG222 15:00
Stevenage
 v 
Grimsby
15:00
Home Win
  51%
51%
1.91
10/11
-110
51%
3.75
11/4
275
25%
4.40
17/5
340
24%
CHA22 15:00
Ipswich
 v 
Bolton
15:00
Home Win
  51%
51%
2.00
1/1
-100
51%
3.40
12/5
240
24%
4.30
33/10
330
25%
LG222 15:00
Bury
 v 
Carlisle
15:00
Home Win
  49%
49%
1.80
4/5
-125
49%
4.00
3/1
300
25%
4.60
18/5
360
26%
CHA22 15:00
Sheff Utd
 v 
Preston
15:00
Home Win
  49%
49%
1.87
20/23
-115
49%
3.75
11/4
275
25%
4.40
17/5
340
26%
LG222 15:00
Forest Green
 v 
Crawley
15:00
Home Win
  48%
48%
1.95
19/20
-106
48%
3.60
13/5
260
24%
4.00
3/1
300
27%
CHA22 15:00
Reading
 v 
Hull
15:00
Home Win
  46%
46%
2.50
6/4
150
46%
3.40
12/5
240
26%
3.05
41/20
205
29%
LG222 15:00
Tranmere
 v 
Newport C
15:00
Home Win
  46%
46%
2.05
21/20
105
46%
3.50
5/2
250
25%
3.80
14/5
280
29%
EPL22 15:00
C Palace
 v 
Newcastle
15:00
Home Win
  45%
45%
2.20
6/5
120
45%
3.40
12/5
240
27%
3.75
11/4
275
28%
LG222 15:00
Lincoln
 v 
MK Dons
15:00
Home Win
  45%
45%
2.05
21/20
105
45%
3.50
5/2
250
26%
3.70
27/10
270
29%
LG122 15:00
Southend
 v 
Fleetwood
15:00
Home Win
  44%
44%
2.00
1/1
-100
44%
3.40
12/5
240
26%
4.00
3/1
300
30%
LG222 15:00
Northampton
 v 
Notts C
15:00
Home Win
  43%
43%
1.95
19/20
-106
43%
3.80
14/5
280
25%
4.00
3/1
300
31%
LG122 15:00
Bristol R
 v 
Coventry
15:00
Home Win
  43%
43%
2.35
27/20
135
43%
3.50
5/2
250
25%
3.25
9/4
225
31%
LG222 15:00
Crewe
 v 
Port Vale
15:00
Home Win
  42%
42%
2.80
9/5
180
42%
3.30
23/10
230
26%
2.70
17/10
170
32%
LG122 15:00
Gillingham
 v 
Peterborough
15:00
Away Win
  42%
42%
3.20
11/5
220
32%
3.80
14/5
280
26%
2.20
6/5
120
42%
LG222 15:00
Cambridge U
 v 
Mansfield
15:00
Away Win
  42%
42%
3.00
2/1
200
32%
3.40
12/5
240
26%
2.40
7/5
140
42%
LG122 15:00
Oxford Utd
 v 
Walsall
15:00
Home Win
  40%
40%
2.20
6/5
120
40%
3.65
13/5
265
26%
3.30
23/10
230
34%
EPL22 12:30 SKY
Fulham
 v 
Watford
12:30 SKY
Home Win
  40%
40%
2.55
31/20
155
40%
3.50
5/2
250
26%
3.00
2/1
200
34%
LG222 15:00
Yeovil
 v 
Swindon
15:00
Home Win
  40%
40%
2.05
21/20
105
40%
3.80
14/5
280
26%
3.75
11/4
275
34%
LG122 15:00
Accrington
 v 
AFC Wim
15:00
Home Win
  40%
40%
2.45
29/20
145
40%
3.40
12/5
240
27%
2.95
39/20
195
33%
LG122 15:00
Scunthorpe
 v 
Shrewsbury
15:00
Home Win
  40%
40%
3.10
21/10
210
40%
3.40
12/5
240
27%
2.40
7/5
140
33%
LG222 15:00
Morecambe
 v 
Macclesfield
15:00
Home Win
  39%
39%
2.35
27/20
135
39%
3.40
12/5
240
27%
3.15
43/20
215
34%
EPL22 15:00
Burnley
 v 
Bournemouth
15:00
Home Win
  39%
39%
3.00
2/1
200
39%
3.40
12/5
240
27%
2.63
13/8
163
35%
LG222 15:00
Oldham
 v 
Colchester
15:00
Home Win
  38%
38%
2.63
13/8
163
38%
3.30
23/10
230
26%
2.80
9/5
180
35%
CHA22 15:00
Derby
 v 
Brentford
15:00
Away Win
  38%
38%
3.20
11/5
220
36%
3.40
12/5
240
26%
2.38
11/8
138
38%
LG122 15:00
Blackpool
 v 
Luton
15:00
Home Win
  38%
38%
2.87
15/8
187
38%
3.50
5/2
250
26%
2.55
31/20
155
36%
CHA22 17:30 SKY
QPR
 v 
Norwich
17:30 SKY
Home Win
  37%
37%
2.50
6/4
150
37%
3.40
12/5
240
26%
3.00
2/1
200
37%
Sunday 23rd SeptemberSun 23rd SeptemberPREDICTION %homedrawaway
EPL23 16:00 SKY
Arsenal
 v 
Everton
16:00 SKY
Home Win
  64%
64%
1.47
40/85
-213
64%
5.00
4/1
400
20%
7.00
6/1
600
17%
EPL23 13:30 SKY
West Ham
 v 
Chelsea
13:30 SKY
Away Win
  62%
62%
6.25
21/4
525
17%
4.50
7/2
350
21%
1.62
8/13
-161
62%
Tuesday 25th SeptemberTue 25th SeptemberPREDICTION %homedrawaway
EFL25 19:45
Oxford Utd
 v 
Man City
19:45
Away Win
  80%
80%
21.00
20/1
2000
7%
9.00
8/1
800
12%
1.17
1/6
-588
80%
EFL25 20:00 SKY
Man Utd
 v 
Derby
20:00 SKY
Home Win
  74%
74%
1.25
1/4
-400
74%
6.50
11/2
550
16%
15.00
14/1
1400
10%
EFL25 19:45
Bournemouth
 v 
Blackburn
19:45
Home Win
  58%
58%
1.62
8/13
-162
58%
4.10
31/10
310
22%
6.50
11/2
550
20%
EFL25 19:45
Burton
 v 
Burnley
19:45
Away Win
  51%
51%
4.00
3/1
300
25%
3.70
27/10
270
24%
2.00
Evens
100
51%
EFL25 19:45
Wycombe
 v 
Norwich
19:45
Away Win
  46%
46%
3.60
13/5
260
29%
3.50
5/2
250
25%
2.10
11/10
110
46%
EFL25 19:45
Millwall
 v 
Fulham
19:45
Away Win
  40%
40%