Manchester United's Javier Hernandez: Lionel Messi's Future Teammate at Barca?

Yoosof FarahSenior Writer IIIMay 24, 2011

Manchester United's Javier Hernandez: Praying For a Move to Barcelona?
Manchester United's Javier Hernandez: Praying For a Move to Barcelona?Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images

According to Lionel Messi, Manchester United's Mexican sensation Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez would be a perfect fit in the Barcelona lineup.

Speaking to the press ahead of Saturday's UEFA Champions League Final between United and Barca at Wembley, the little Argentine has attempted to cherry-pick Barca's next signing, by poaching them from their opponent.

Messi said, "[Javier] Hernandez is definitely a player that could fit in here in Barcelona. He speaks Spanish and he's got a great style of play. 

"He's very unpredictable when he's challenging his opponent and that's something we consider as a great strength in our team. I'm sure... Barcelona... are watching a player like him."

So could Javier Hernandez be a Barcelona player one day?

As Messi said, his style of play is perfectly suited for Barca, who play with an interlinking attacking trio of Messi, David Villa and Pedro Rodriguez.

Pedro and Villa usually pull out wide and run the channels, stretching their opponents defence and creating space to receive passes and get Barca into their opponents' final third quicker.

Once inside the final third they will usually interlink with Messi or Andres Iniesta—who will take the ball out wide if the centre of the defence is too packed—to get into the penalty area, slice open the defence and tuck the ball home with an easy finish.  

And that has in a way been the basis of Hernandez's partnership with Wayne Rooney this season at Manchester United. 

When dropping deep, Rooney will look for the 22-year-old striker in a wide position to get the ball forward quickly. And when Rooney pushes higher, Hernandez will interlink with the Englishman to create pockets of space for goalscoring chances.

Even when Rooney's not playing, Chicharito's brilliant off-ball movements and awareness of his teammates' movements means he can bring his strike partner or the midfielders into play, and either score himself, using them as a decoy, or be the decoy and give them the space to work a shot on goal. 

And of course, once presented with the chances, Hernandez has the natural finishing ability to convert his opportunities.

In a league such as La Liga, where goalscoring chances come much more frequently than in the Premier League, the young striker will have no problem finding the net, and could easily set a goalscoring record.

That combined with the exhaustive strength and conditioning regime players in the Premier League go through, as well as the fitness required to play for Manchester United, means Hernandez in theory would have no problems settling in Spain's top flight and top club.

The fact that he speaks Spanish, has a prolific goalscoring record in the toughest major league in the world for goals, has a playing style naturally suited to their team and has a great scoring record in the Champions League too, makes Javier Hernandez one attractive proposition to FC Barcelona.

Ahead of the big final at Wembley, Manchester United have the whole Ryan Giggs super-injunction saga to deal with, as well as their grand occasion at the home of football.

But they might soon have to start fending off a load of admiring glances, and eight-figure offers, from the Barcelona board for their young Mexican superstar.