June 25, 2013
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Last year, Manchester United pulled off one of the biggest transfers of the summer, poaching Robin van Persie from Arsenal. This summer, it appears they could be up to their old tricks, reportedly making a move for Napoli's Edinson Cavani.
From Alan Nixon of The Mirror:
Manchester United are making a record-breaking £50 million move for Edinson Cavani.
New United boss David Moyes wants to sign the Uruguay striker from Rafa Benitez’s Napoli. But the Scot faces competition from Real Madrid and Chelsea. And news of the bid will raise even more question marks over Wayne Rooney’s future at Old Trafford.
Cavani’s powerful style looks ideal for the Premier League. Moyes is keen to play two men up front and Cavani would make a perfect partner for Robin van Persie.
Without question, there would be some pretty serious implications to United's signing of Cavani. For one, it would almost assuredly mean that Rooney was on the way out of the club. It would be hard to ensure enough playing time for Rooney, van Persie, Cavani, Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck.
Plus, Rooney's sale would be an easy way to earn back some of the scratch sent to acquire Cavani.
For another, it would seem to indicate David Moyes' desire to play with two strikers atop the formation, rather than play with a striker atop the formation and a player dropping into the hole behind him. Both Cavani and van Persie are well-rounded enough to play with a second player atop the attack, and each could occasionally drop deeper and play facilitator.
Of course, it would make it quite difficult for Hernandez or Welbeck to get much game time.
Finally, it would send a signal to the rest of the Premier League—namely teams undergoing summer transformations such as Chelsea and Manchester City—that the Red Devils don't intend on giving up their title. Only Neymar's signing with Barcelona—or Cristiano Ronaldo or Gareth Bale leaving their respective clubs—would garner more hype than Cavani moving to United.
This is all still a long shot, of course, especially with reports surfacing that suggest Chelsea and Napoli have agreed to a transfer fee. And there's no guarantee that a partnership between Cavani and van Persie would work, much as van Persie and Rooney never seemed to pair well.
But my goodness, can you imagine van Persie and Cavani atop the United attack if it did work? The two have combined to score 152 goals in league play the past two years—you can bet the Red Devils would be a nightmare for defenses across all of Europe.
It's enough to make you shudder.
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