Manchester United have added Sevilla's Jules Kounde to their list of targets with manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer not ruling out a move for a centre-back in January if his problems in defence do not improve, sources have told ESPN.
Only newly promoted West Brom have shipped more goals in the Premier League so far this season as Solskjaer has struggled to find a reliable partner for captain Harry Maguire.
Kounde, 21, is considered an option to strengthen the defence in January or next summer but any move is likely to rely on United moving on at least two of the centre-backs already at Old Trafford.
Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo are surplus to requirements and both have been left out of this season's Champions League squad. Rojo has one year left on his contract while Jones has at least three after signing a long-term extension in February 2019.
Solskjaer wants to give Eric Bailly and Axel Tuanzebe more time to prove they can overcome injury problems that have prevented the pair from being available regularly and there are also high hopes for 18-year-old academy graduate Teden Mengi.
Manchester City registered their interest in Kounde in the summer but after scouts described the Frenchman as "an unknown quantity" after just one full season in La Liga, director of football Txiki Begiristain opted instead for Benfica centre-back Ruben Dias.
Solskjaer, meanwhile, will have to decide whether to recall Victor Lindelof to the team for the trip to Newcastle on Saturday.
The Sweden international was left out of the XI for the defeat to Tottenham in favour of Bailly after starting United's first two league games of the season.
Bailly suffered a minor injury while on international duty with Ivory Coast but is expected to be available for the fixture at St James' Park.