Man United sparked Barcelona panic after willingness to activate defender’s £54m minimum release clause in 2018

Manchester United reportedly sparked panic among Barcelona officials in 2018 after the Reds were willing to activate Samuel Umtiti’s £54m (€60m) release clause.

Umtiti, 27, joined Barcelona in 2016 from French side Lyon in a deal which cost the Catalonian giants £22.5m, as per Transfermarkt.

Since Umtiti’s arrival in Spain just over four-years ago, the defender has featured in just 116 matches in all competitions for Barcelona.

After emerging as one of Europe’s most highly-rated centre-backs, Umtiti has found what should be the peak of his career plagued by injuries.

The 27-year-old has notoriously suffered with a dreadful reoccurring knee injury which has been the main contributor to the defender having to sit out up to 79 matches for Barcelona.

However, the centre-back’s career could have panned out very differently after a recent report from Sport claimed that Premier League giants United came exceptionally close to prizing Umtiti away from the Nou Camp in 2018.

It has been claimed that United’s hierarchy were willing to activate Umtiti’s £54m (€60m) minimum release clause which prompted panic among his Spanish club.

Sport claim that Barcelona officials had ‘sleepless nights’ over United’s eagerness to bring their star defender to Old Trafford.

Whilst we think Sport’s report is a bit over the top, designed to add emphasise, it does go without saying, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will undoubtedly be relieved he didn’t inherit yet another injury stricken defender.

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