Manchester United loanee Eric Bailly was sent off for Marseille in a Coupe de France game on Saturday, hospitalising his opponent with a horror challenge. Bailly summoned his inner Nigel de Jong with a shocking high boot in the early stages of the round-of-64 clash at Hyeres.
Erik ten Hag shipped the 28-year-old off to France for a season of regular minutes, viewing him as fifth in his centre-back pecking order. But his time at Marseille hasn’t gone entirely to plan, with the injuries that have hampered his United career following him across the Channel.
And a patchy loan spell wasn’t made any better by his antics this weekend, receiving a red card just 15 minutes into OM’s cup game at fourth-tier Hyeres.
Bailly made a stabbing challenge that isn’t for the faint of heart, leaving Hyeres midfielder Moussa N’Diaye requiring urgent medical assistance.
It replicated De Jong’s vile challenge on Xabi Alonso early in the 2010 World Cup final, kicking the Spaniard’s ribs stud-first.
N’Diaye has been described as ‘stable’ but was whisked away to hospital in an ambulance for tests as a result of his crunching clash with the United flop.
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Bailly will now serve a suspension, further harming his chances of impressing Ten Hag as the Dutchman looks ahead to the next stage of his Old Trafford rebuild.
The Ivory Coast international suffered from thigh and dead leg problems since joining Marseille on a season-long loan.
He started five of Les Phoceens’ Champions League group-stage games, including both clashes with Tottenham Hotspur.
However, he has started just three Ligue 1 games this term, missing five through injury and being benched in three.
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With Lisandro Martinez and Raphael Varane forming a formidable partnership at the heart of Ten Hag’s defence, it’s difficult to see Bailly having a future at United.
One of Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof are expected to leave the club this summer in search of regular football, with the former more likely to head out of the exit door.
But Bailly isn’t likely to fill the void. Ten Hag is understood to want another left-sided centre-back as part of his summer recruitment, so he would be happy to sanction two sales.
There is plenty of time for Bailly to salvage his season and fight his way back into the Red Devils boss’ thinking. That said, his latest wild antics could be one too many to come back from.
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