Edinson Cavani Should Move to Manchester City and Not Chelsea or Real Madrid

Karl Matchett@@karlmatchettFeatured ColumnistJune 13, 2013

NAPLES, ITALY - MAY 12:  Edinson Cavani of Napoli in action during the Serie A match between SSC Napoli and AC Siena at Stadio San Paolo on May 12, 2013 in Naples, Italy.  (Photo by Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images)
Giuseppe Bellini/Getty Images

One of the most in-demand strikers in the European transfer market this season is Uruguayan Edinson Cavani, currently at Napoli in Serie A but linked with some of the richest clubs around.

Cavani is reportedly wanted by Premier League duo Manchester City and Chelsea, as well as Spanish Primera Division giants Real Madrid, according to Mirror Football.

While all three are likely to be signing a big-name striker this summer to lead their attack into the new campaign, from the point of view of Cavani himself it would seem a move to Manchester City would be the best option.

Why City?

Cavani's big strength is in leading the line, with plenty of support around him. He does it not just by being physical or great in the air, but by using intelligent movement and always being very direct in trying to get close to goal.

City have enjoyed utilising clever passing players outside the penalty area and in the channels, who would certainly be able to pick out Cavani's good movement in the box and continuously feed him with opportunities to fire on goal.

In the whole of Serie A, Cavani averaged the highest shots per game for last season, recording 4.6 efforts each time he took to the field. His conversion rate was around 18.6 percent, a fair rate without being amazing for a good striker in a successful team, with Napoli ending the campaign in second place.

City have also lined up in a way which would play to his strengths; they tend to organise the attack high up the pitch, leaving the central striker as close to the goal as possible. When two forwards have been selected, one of Carlos Tevez or Sergio Aguero have always been keen to drop in and create an extra attacking midfield presence to help open up opposition defences, but the other, more direct striker would maintain his position much closer to goal.

Cavani has many attributes, but blistering pace is not amongst them; City would get the best out of him by continuing to press the forward line high up the pitch.

City were not afraid to put plenty of crosses in last season, either; they averaged 23 per game, comfortably in the top half of the sides in the Premier League—and with Cavani managing six headed goals in league play this season, that's an area they could look to exploit more often.

Certainly the signing of Jesus Navas and the rumoured interest in Isco points to a fast and varied attack, based on getting the ball forward quickly into the final third, where the likes of David Silva and Samir Nasri can create openings with their clever through-passes.

City really need a proven goalscorer for the UEFA Champions League next season as they bid to make it past the group stages for the first time, and Cavani would certainly bring them that. He hit 29 in league play last season, with a further seven in seven games in the Europa League.

There are not many strikers around and available who would seem to suit City's needs as Cavani does.

While tactics could certainly change this season after Roberto Mancini's exit, all three of these interested sides have changed bosses, so the striker would be facing the same situation regardless.

Why Not Chelsea, or Real Madrid?

So why indeed not City's Premier League rivals? Chelsea are back under the guidance of Jose Mourinho, who is close to already finalising a move for Andre Schurrle.

Schurrle fits the mould of a Mourinho attack; a very quick and direct wide forward who will cut in off the flanks to great effect on his stronger foot, to shoot for goal or at least commit defenders to create space in behind.

Damien Duff and Arjen Robben did it during his first spell at Chelsea, Cristiano Ronaldo did it to better effect than anybody else in the world at Real Madrid and now it appears the German will do it at Stamford Bridge next season—if he gets in the team ahead of Eden Hazard.

For therein lies another issue: Chelsea have a great lineup of attacking midfielders who are all more direct and about chance creation for themselves, rather than being playmakers looking to feed others.

Oscar is an exception, but Hazard, Juan Mata and Victor Moses are very much attackers who will make room for themselves and look to find the back of the net themselves.

And what of Real Madrid?

They of course have Ronaldo, who does the above job and who is the main attacking point of the team.

Everything has been set up for him to do his best work, and that includes the role of the striker. For Real, the centre-forward is required to work extremely hard to create space through the middle, whether by pulling out wide into the channels, dropping deep to link up with the midfield or actively swapping runs with the Portuguese forward.

Cavani would certainly not be remaining central and looking to get on the end of Ronaldo knock-downs very often, yet he would still be expected to find the back of the net with regularity.

It is also debatable whether Real's usual chaotic and all-out-attack approach, breaking at pace often several times a game to launch attacks, would really suit Cavani. Of course it could change when the new boss comes in, but again, everything is still set up to benefit from the traits and talents of Ronaldo, who will still score more than even the best leading-line striker.

Do City have the better squad in place than either Chelsea or Real Madrid? In some areas, perhaps so, but in others they need further reinforcement. That, though, is one of the areas City have no worries over; they can afford to spend up to £53 million, which is reported to be the figure to seal Cavani's signature, and that on top of the almost-£50 million they've already spent.

City seems a better fit for Cavani right now all round, and if he gets this move right then he can showcase his best talents in his prime years.

Player and team data from Whoscored.com and Transfermarkt.co.uk