New suitors have emerged for serial gossip-page subjects Edinson Cavani and Wayne Rooney, and both of the new rumors would qualify as shockers if true.
Cavani, Napoli's 26-year-old Uruguayan international striker, is the subject of a £50 million move by Manchester United, according to the Daily Mirror. New manager David Moyes wants to partner Cavani with Robin van Persie in a two-man attack.
The Sun, meanwhile, is reporting that Barcelona could move for £25 million-rated Rooney if Manchester United decide to sell the England international forward. Rooney, 27, made a transfer request at the end of last season and is set for "showdown talks" this week with Moyes, according to the report.
Both Cavani and Rooney have been linked with multiple other clubs. According to Napoli radio station Radio Marte (h/t Daily Telegraph), Chelsea and Napoli have agreed to a €58 million transfer. Cavani has previously been quoted by Cadena COPE (h/t Goal.com) as saying he prefers a move to Real Madrid. Rooney has drawn interest from Chelsea and Arsenal, according to the Daily Mirror.
Assuming for a moment that the latest rumors are true, and Cavani joins United while Rooney heads to Barcelona—who would benefit most from those moves?
Cavani led Serie A last season with 29 goals in 34 appearances. If paired with Van Persie, Cavani would offer strength and goalscoring instinct to United's attack. Van Persie, who possesses superb ball skills, would be able to drop deeper to direct creative traffic, while opposing defenders would have to keep track of two lethal finishers.
Which player would you rather have on your team?
It's perhaps less clear how Rooney would fit in Barcelona's plans. Rooney does track back to defend, as The Sun's unnamed "insider" is quoted as saying in the article, and he does possess excellent touch, control and vision.
But who would he displace in Barca's lineup?
It's safe to say Lionel Messi is an automatic selection in the false nine role, while Andres Iniesta and Xavi are well established as playmakers. What's more, Barcelona recently signed Neymar, who will fill another spot in the attack. No matter whether Rooney would play as a striker or playmaker, Barcelona have abundant options already available.
That suggests United would benefit more—if in fact the rumors are true. That said, while Cavani currently ranks among Europe's top strikers, the Uruguayan's final destination this summer is far from settled.