Manchester United Transfer Rumours: Barcelona's Pedro Should Be Target for Moyes

Leigh WalshCorrespondent IDecember 5, 2013

SEVILLE, SPAIN - NOVEMBER 10:  Pedro Rodriguez of FC Barcelona celebrates after scoring his team's 2nd goal during the La Liga match between Real Betis Balompie and FC Barcelona at Estadio Benito Villamarin on November 10, 2013 in Seville, Spain.  (Photo by Denis Doyle/Getty Images)
Denis Doyle/Getty Images

The last couple of seasons have seen an influx of talented Spanish players into the Premier League.

Fernando Torres, Juan Mata, Alvaro Negredo, Santi Cazorla and David Silva are just a few who have brought their brand of free-flowing football to Britain’s pitches.

Manchester United may have a Spaniard between the posts, but their fans will have been casting an enviable eye at La Furia Roja footballers on show at rival clubs.

But, if recent articles are to go by, that could all be about to change.

BILBAO, SPAIN - DECEMBER 01: Pedro Rodriguez of FC Barcelona reacts after missing a chance to score during the La Liga match between Athletic Club and FC Barcelona at San Mames Stadium on December 1, 2013 in Bilbao, Spain.  (Photo by David Ramos/Getty Ima
David Ramos/Getty Images

As John Cross writes in the Mirror, both Manchester United and Liverpool are rumoured to be interested in Spanish international Pedro, after reports emerged that he is unhappy with his current situation at Barcelona.

The 26-year-old has struggled to cement a place in the starting XI at Camp Nou this season. This has been partly due to the form of Alexis Sanchez and the signing of Neymar from Santos, but he is also behind Cesc Fabregas and, obviously, Lionel Messi in the pecking order.

Pedro has played well this season when he has been on the pitch. He has scored 10 goals and assisted five for club and country, which follows on from an impressive 2012/13 campaign when he bagged 19 goals and set up nine—per ESPN FC

But Pedro, who is now 26, needs to be starting week in and week out. Warming the bench in La Liga won’t help his cause in a World Cup year, and a move to the Premier League could be just what he needs.

While David Moyes’ immediate priority should be strengthening United’s central midfield, capturing the signature of Pedro would be the type of signing that gets Red Devils fans excited.

While his best position is on the right, the speedy Pedro can play across the forward line.

His agility and composure on the ball are impressive, but it’s his movement off the ball that differentiates him from other wingers. Like most Barcelona players, Pedro is always looking to make himself available for a pass, and when he gets it, he oozes confidence on the ball.

He is equally capable with both feet, which he consistently demonstrates with his ability to finish in front of goal.

The thought of a Wayne Rooney, Robin van Persie, Shinji Kagawa and Pedro attack—with two holding players behind them—will be a thrilling one for fans of the Old Trafford outfit.

MANCHESTER, ENGLAND - APRIL 22:  Robin van Persie of Manchester United celebrates scoring his second goal with Wayne Rooney and Shinji Kagawa during the Barclays Premier League match between Manchester United and Aston Villa at Old Trafford on April 22, 2
Alex Livesey/Getty Images

United’s play going forward has been somewhat rigid in recent months, and playing their best players rather than a set system will allow the forward players the freedom to interchange up top.

Pedro would offer United attributes that are lacking in their other wide men.

Wilfried Zaha has yet to really feature under Moyes. Nani, who has been linked with a move to Juventus—per—Ashley Young and Danny Welbeck all lack consistency. 

On their day, each one is capable, but those days are too few and far between for a club like Manchester United.

Antonio Valencia is a player who many United fans have a lot of time for. He has a fantastic work rate, and he is more consistent than the Red Devils’ other wide options. But in Valencia’s case, the numbers don’t lie.

In 40 games for the champions last season, the Ecuador international scored just one goal while assisting six—per ESPN FC. This season, his form has picked up somewhat, with three goals and two assists. But Pedro would offer United a more exciting outlet on the right side of their attack.

Prising him away from his boyhood club will be a tall order. But if United are to have any trophy aspirations this season, Moyes needs to think big and strengthen.

Pedro would tick both those boxes.