Fred Prefers Premier League Move Amid Manchester United, Manchester City Links

Rory Marsden@@roomarsdenFeatured ColumnistMarch 30, 2018

ROME, ITALY - MARCH 13:  Fred of Shakhtar Donetsk in action during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 Second Leg match between AS Roma and Shakhtar Donetsk at Stadio Olimpico on March 13, 2018 in Rome, Italy.  (Photo by Chris Brunskill Ltd/Getty Images)
Chris Brunskill Ltd/Getty Images

Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred is reportedly wanted by Manchester United and Manchester City, and his representative, former Arsenal star Gilberto Silva, has confirmed the Premier League is his client's preferred destination. 

Gilberto added that English clubs made enquiries about the 25-year-old in the January transfer window, and he left the door open for a summer departure from Shakhtar, per Sky Sports (via Metro's Simon Rice): "Yes [we've had inquiries from the Premier League]. We had in this last window, but it didn't happen. Shakhtar Donetsk rely too much on him, he's doing a great job for the club. Let's see for the summer."

Brazilian Fred would be a fine addition to both United and City's squads.

Red Devils manager Jose Mourinho relies too much on Nemanja Matic in the defensive-midfield role as Michael Carrick has hardly been available this season, and the Englishman is set to retire in the summer.

BASEL, SWITZERLAND - FEBRUARY 13: Fernandinho of Manchester City controls the ball during the UEFA Champions League Round of 16 First Leg match between FC Basel and Manchester City at St. Jakob-Park on February 13, 2018 in Basel, Switzerland. (Photo by MB
MB Media/Getty Images

City, meanwhile, also need a long-term successor for the ever-consistent Fernandinho, who turns 33 in May. 

Fred joined Shakhtar from Brazilian club Internacional in 2013 for €15 million as a replacement for Fernandinho, who had just left for City.

However, manager Pep Guardiola is unlikely to snap him up without a fight from United boss Mourinho, as Fred has proved himself to be potential star in the making.

A doping scandal interrupted his progress at Shakhtar, but during 2017-18 he has proved he could have what it takes to be a Premier League stalwart, not least in two impressive UEFA Champions League matches against City.

A deep-lying playmaker, Fred has numerous strings to his bow. He boasts impressive defensive talents, but he can also contribute creatively.

He looks the perfect fit for Guardiola's City, but it is also no surprise such a hard-working and multi-talented player has caught the eye of Mourinho.

The Brazil international's current Shakhtar contract lasts to 2023, so the Ukrainian outfit are sure to ask for a hefty fee if they are to let him go this summer.

Both City and United have more than enough financial clout to meet even the highest valuation, though, and the question now is seemingly not whether Fred will leave Shakhtar in the summer but where he will end up.

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