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Manchester United Plan on Activating Manolas Release Clause

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Unless Roma negotiate a new deal, the club risks losing its best defender for a mere €36 million.

Juventus v AS Roma - Serie A Photo by Tullio M. Puglia/Getty Images

Through the years, we have seen Roma ship out some of its best back line talent in order to maximize profits. Marquinhos, Mehdi Banatia, Antonio Rudiger and Alessio Romagnoli were all sent packing to fill the Roma coffers. Considering how many top tier defenders have cycled through the revolving doors at Trigoria after short stints in giallorosso, it’s a minor miracle that Kostas Manolas has stuck around into his fifth season. Not that Roma haven’t tried to ship him out, too.

As you probably recall, Manolas was nearly learning Russian, months before he entered into Roma lore with his goal against Barcelona. But when Manolas refused Zenit’s rubles, Rudiger was shipped to Chelsea instead. With that Roma committed to keeping the Greek international in the Italian Capital for awhile, and rewarded his solid play with a new contract through 2022 just last December.

Great news, right?! Well, yes, except for one minor detail; Manolas’ contract includes a €36 million release clause that can be enacted beginning in June. So basically, Roma becomes powerless if someone wants its best defender, if they’re willing to pay the stated fee. And let’s be frank, in the current market, €36 million is a bargain for one of Serie A’s better defenders, who is currently valued at €45 million by Transfermarkt.

Well, wouldn’t you know, the latest reports suggest that Manchester United, which is desperate to shore up its back line this summer, is prepared to activate the clause and bring Manolas to England’s industrial north. For a club like United, €36 million is chump change. For his part, Manolas is said to be happy playing for Roma; but is happiness enough for him to turn down a reported €6 million a season offer from the Red Devils? Roma can’t be that naive, especially when cue up the Imperial March... Mino Raiola is the player’s new agent.

Roma are said to be willing to negotiate a new and improved deal for Manolas, in order to, at the very least, ensure that he’s not lost for such a paltry sum. A new deal doesn’t necessarily mean that Manolas wouldn’t leave Roma for United or another big club next summer. Arsenal, Juventus, and Inter are all rumored to have serious interest, as well. However, it would allow them to hold some of the cards when negotiating an exit fee.

I’d hate to see Manolas go, especially considering the Giallorossi’s current defensive woes. Unfortunately though, one thing has become clear through the years, Roma will sell when it means maximizing profits. However, if Roma are to maximize profits in the event that they decide to sell, then Monchi better negotiate a new deal before it’s too late.