Manchester United transfer news: Chris Smalling and Daley Blind ‘to be replaced’ as Jose Mourinho starts to lose patience

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The 4-0 defeat by Chelsea appears to have swayed Jose Mourinho into a complete revamp of his Manchester United defence after it was reported that Chris Smalling and Daley Blind will be replaced.

United had the best defence in the Premier League last season under Louis van Gaal as they conceded just 35 goals in 38 matches, but Mourinho’s side have already leaked 12 goals this season in the league, three times more than Tottenham, and it appears to have had an effect on the Portuguese’s thinking, with his preference to build defensively reliable teams.

According to the Daily Mail, Mourinho will seek to bring in a new centre-back and right-back, and is yet to be convinced by Luke Shaw’s ability after leaving him out of the matchday squad that suffered the humiliating loss at Chelsea.

However, it appears to be Smalling and Blind at risk the most in United’s defence, with the former receiving a dressing down by Mourinho after his error allowed Chelsea’s Pedro to open the scoring last Sunday after just 29 seconds.

Mourinho is already willing to sell defenders Matteo Darmian and Marcos Rojo in January after being left deeply unimpressed with them during his start to life at Old Trafford, and he is also believed to be targeting a new right-back to provide competition for Antonio Valencia on the right flank.

Despite his impressive start to the season, Valencia’s attacking-focus – which stems from his natural position being in midfield – has exposed his defensive frailties in recent matches, and Mourinho is keen to strengthen when the transfer window reopens in January.

One option United are keeping an eye on in Roma’s Antonio Rudiger, who is capable of playing at right-back as well as in a central role. The 23-year-old has been linked with a move to Chelsea in recent days, and after recovering from a serious knee injury, both Premier League clubs are expected to send scouts to Italy to watch the Germany international.

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It’s added that £35m could be enough to tempt Roma to part with Rudiger, although the Serie A side are reluctant to sell one of their bright young talents as they look to end Juventus’s domination at the top of the Italian league this season.

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