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Manchester United scouts watch highly-rated Bundesliga defender, but the motive is confusing



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Manchester United reportedly sent their scouts to keep tabs on Eintracht Frankfurt and Bundesliga centre-back Willian Pacho on Saturday.

Centre-back has been a cause of constant issues for United throughout Erik ten Hag‘s time at the club, with eight different players starting in the position for him over the last two years.

Several players who have played in the position, such as Victor Lindelöf, Casemiro, and Raphaël Varane, are widely expected to leave Old Trafford this summer.

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On Monday morning, it was noted that the Red Devils would be looking to bring in two central defenders this summer in a bid to improve their defence.

Amongst INEOS‘ targets for the position are Everton’s Jarrad Branthwaite and Bayer Leverkusen’s Edmond Tapsoba. But now, it appears that another Bundesliga defender may have found himself on their list.

The scouts are active

It was reported by TBR Football early Monday afternoon that United had scouts watching Eintracht Frankfurt defender Willian Pacho over the weekend.

Pacho, 22, has only seen his stature rise since joining the German side in July of last year. Making 30 starts in the Bundesliga this season, the Ecuadorian international has cemented himself as a vital part of the starting XI for both club and country.

Arriving from Belgian side Royal Antwerp FC, Pachp, at just 21 years old, was a vital member of the Belgian side’s squad as they clinched their first league title for 65 years in the 2022/23 season.

A confusing motive

One concern with Pacho is that the defender very much favours playing on the left side of either a back three or a back four.

As a result, if United pursue their interest in Pacho, questions will naturally arise over Lisandro Martínez’s future at the club. This means the club’s potential motive behind signing Pacho is both unclear and confusing if Martínez is to continue as the first-choice centre-back next season.

Martinez has struggled with injuries since the latter half of 2023, playing just 761 minutes in all competitions since this time last year.

The World Cup-winning defender’s injury record since arriving in Manchester, combined with reports that Ineos only see three players as ‘unsellable’ will cast suspicions over his role within the United squad.