Watford open talks with Manchester United over loan deal for young right-back

Watford have reportedly opened discussions with Manchester United over signing Ethan Laird on a season-long loan.

The young full-back made two appearances on the pre-season tour of Thailand and Australia, but The Athletic claims Watford are keen to bring him in on loan next season.

Another spell in the Championship could benefit the youngster unless Erik ten Hag thinks he is ready to compete with Diogo Dalot for a place in the team.

Laurie Whitwell writes: “What have opened talks with United over Laird, with a season-long loan being discussed. Laird, who did well on the club’s tour to Thailand and Australia, needs to get regular minutes after a promising time at Swansea City and AFC Bournemouth last season.”

The report also states that AC Milan and AS Roma are interested in Eric Bailly.

Laird, 20, had a good spell at Swansea City during the first half of last season. Then, for the second half, he joined Bournemouth and didn’t get a lot of game time.

It would be of huge benefit to Laird if he could go a season without any serious injuries. As a young right-back, who likes to get forward, there’s no reason he doesn’t have a future at United under Erik ten Hag.

Another loan spell in the Championship – with regular first-team football – could give Laird the experience he needs to kick on. We all saw how it did James Garner a lot of good last season as Nottingham Forest secured promotion to the Premier League.

Laird has a bright future ahead of him if he can stop injuries hindering his development.

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