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Manchester United Legend ‘Flattered’ At Being Compared To Eric Bailly

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - JULY 13: (EXCLUSIVE COVERAGE) Eric Bailly of Manchester United in action during a first team training session at Aon Training Complex on July 13, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by John Peters/Man Utd via Getty Images)

After only a handful of games for his new club, defender Eric Bailly has quickly become a fan-favourite at Manchester United.

Eyebrows were raised at José Mourinho’s decision to spend £30m on the Ivorian centre-back, but based on his early performances he will be well worth the significant investment.

The 22-year-old has been earning praise from all sides, from the manager to the stands, and now an Old Trafford legend has added his considerably weighty opinion by throwing some more praise Bailly’s way.

Nemanja Vidic, who made 300 appearances for the club in a trophy-laden eight and a half year spell, has said that he is flattered that people are already beginning to compare Bailly to him.

MANCHESTER, UNITED KINGDOM - MARCH 11: Nemanja Vidic of Manchester United celebrates scoring the opening goal with team mate Rio Ferdinand (R) during the UEFA Champions League Round of Sixteen, Second Leg match between Manchester United and Inter Milan at Old Trafford on March 11, 2009 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images)

Speaking to Man United’s matchday programme United Review (later published by the official website), Vidic has confidently predicted that if the young defender carries on at this rate, he will certainly go on to have a highly successful career at the club, just as he himself did before ultimately leaving in 2014.

Vidic said:

“It’s nice to hear and, from what I’ve seen, he is a very good player.

“If he keeps going as he is, he will definitely have a great career at United,” Vidic told us. “Of course, I’m glad that someone compares him to me and I hope he will be a player who does very well for us. He’s strong and composed with the ball. He’s a very confident player. He has a bit of everything.

“What I have seen in the first few matches is that we have a great player for the future and a player I would say we needed. He reads the game well.

“He already looks a big signing for us.

“I think he’s already popular with the fans. Of the signings we’ve had this year, I think he’s the one that has surprised everyone the most. He’s 22 years old and he went straight into the club and looks at home straight away.

“That’s outstanding for me. We know how many players come to England and need time to adapt and that, for me, is what is so impressive – he’s 22 and he has adapted straight away and showed some confidence which is important.”

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - SEPTEMBER 24: Jose Mourinho, Manager of Manchester United gives Eric Bailly of Manchester United and Antonio Valencia of Manchester United instructions during the Premier League match between Manchester United and Leicester City at Old Trafford on September 24, 2016 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Clive Brunskill/Getty Images)

Bailly continued his impressive form in the 4-1 demolition of Premier League champions Leicester on Saturday, ensuring that neither Jamie Vardy nor Islam Slimani were given an inch.

Vidic goes on to give his heir apparent some advice going forward, how to maintain the good form without getting carried away by it:

“The most important thing for a player of his age is to keep his feet on the ground,

“The first few matches he really performed well and had so many compliments from everyone, but it’s important to stay calm, keep doing what he was doing before and keep improving.

“If he continues to play like he does and stays focused, he can be here for many years and help the team be successful.”

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Author: The PA Team

This article was written by a member of The PA Team.