United open contract talks with Bailly, says Solskjaer

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Premier League - Manchester United v Wolverhampton Wanderers

(Reuters) - Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer revealed the club has opened discussions with injury-plagued Ivory Coast defender Eric Bailly over an extension to his current contract.

Bailly joined United in 2016 and was former manager Jose Mourinho's first signing for the club, but the 26-year-old has struggled to make a consistent run in the team because of injuries.

Despite difficulties that have seen him play only 100 times since joining from Villarreal for 25 million pounds ($34.8 million), Solskjaer is keen to extend the central defender's stay at the club, with his current contract expiring in June.

“We have started talking to Eric and Eric’s representatives,” Solskjaer said. "Eric is keeping fitter for longer. He is getting more robust. "You can see his performances as well – I have been very happy with him.

"His playing style has made him lose too many games because 100 games, that’s not enough for the period that he has been here."

Bailly has played eight times in the Premier League this season and last featured for United in the 0-0 draw with Crystal Palace on March 3.

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(Reporting by Michael Church in Hong Kong, Editing by Gerry Doyle)