Days after agreeing to a deal to add Arsenal striker Robin van Persie via a £24 million transfer, Manchester United has reportedly nixed an offer from Chelsea for striker Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez, the man whom van Persie will presumably replace in the Red Devils' starting XI.
ESPN reported the news on Friday:
ESPN also understands that Manchester United have rejected an enquiry from Chelsea for Javier Hernandez
— ESPN FC (@ESPNFC) August 17, 2012
Arsenal (via the Daily Mirror) and Juventus (via The Guardian) have also been rumored landing spots for the 24-year-old Mexican, who, if he remains at Old Trafford, will be fighting for playing time with van Persie, Wayne Rooney, Dimitar Berbatov and the recently re-signed Danny Welbeck.
As fellow Bleacher Report writer Michael Dulko suggests, "Hernandez made a spectacular debut (for United) during the 2010-11 season with 20 goals in all competitions, making 45 appearances. He followed up his first season with 12 goals in all competitions in the 2011-12 season last year, but made nine fewer appearances for 36 on the year."
Hernandez, according to the Daily Mirror, "is said to be frustrated at the inevitable lack of opportunities to start now van Persie has joined, amid unconfirmed reports he has told Ferguson he wants to leave."
Certainly, injuries are bound to happen over the course of a 38-match Premier League campaign, making the need for capable backups necessary.
But surely Ferguson has little need for five strikers of this caliber, not to mention the fact that it seems unlikely that there could be sufficient playing time to keep all five strikers happy.
It makes sense that Ferguson would be hesitant to sell a scorer of Chicharito's ilk to a Premier League rival. So rejecting Chelsea and Arsenal doesn't seem all that outrageous.
But when Juventus and other clubs come calling for Hernandez (or, even more preferably, for Berbatov, who has in many fans' minds outstayed his welcome at Old Trafford), Sir Alex might be wise to listen.