Manchester United are closing in on signing Felipe Anderson from Lazio. Anderson’s agent reportedly met with United officials yesterday, although no offer has been presented from the Old Trafford camp as yet.
Anderson, 22, is a highly talented attacking midfielder, who is comfortable playing on the wings as also in the No. 10 role.
In his debut season with Lazio, he made a strong impact in the Serie A, scoring 10 goals and further adding seven assists to his name. This season, however, hasn’t gone particularly well for him.
Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport reported recently that Manchester United are preparing a bid for the Brazilian. Lazio are looking to bolster their defensive options, and are willing to sell their prized asset at the right price.
French media outlet RMC (h/t Sport Witness) claims that Manchester United are looking to seal the deal with a €50m offer for Anderson. The Serie A giants are looking to replace the Brazilian with AC Milan forward Stefan El Shaarawy, who is also a reported transfer (h/t Football Italia) target of Roma.
Anderson is a highly talented young player, but the price quoted for him are way too much, taking into consideration he hasn’t enjoyed a good campaign this season.
In many ways, the potential deal can be drawn parallel to United’s summer acquisition of Dutch winger Memphis Depay.
Without going too much into finer technical comparisons, both these players are good at scoring goals, creating chances for team-mates, and are capable of producing moments of brilliance.
However, Depay has found it difficult to flourish at Old Trafford and replicate his form at PSV Eindhoven, and there would also be some concerns about Anderson’s potential impact, since both the players are stylistically similar.
Anderson, despite his great dribbling skills and excellent technical abilities, he goes missing at times in games. Football journalist Rafael Hernandez believes he’s definitely not what Manchester United needs at the moment.
In my sincere opinion, Felipe Anderson is a massive waste of money and definitely not what Manchester United needs.
— Rafael Hernández (@RafaelH117) January 2, 2016
What will his role be like? Will Anderson be encouraged to express himself in Louis van Gaal’s meticulous passing system?
Having said that he is young, and will develop other area of his game (especially decision making and adapting to various tactical changes) with age. There is a genuine world-class potential in Anderson, if it is nurtured properly.
Ander Herrera wanted by Juventus
Manchester United’s midfielder Ander Herrera is the latest player to have been linked with a move to Juventus.
Juventus’ officials, Pavel Nedved and Fabio Paratici, watched Herrera during United’s game against Swansea and the Bianconeri are planning a formal offer for the Spaniard, although Tuttosport (h/t Sport Witness) admit, the move will be difficult to complete.
The case with a Herrera is a strange one. The Spaniard has usually excelled whenever he’s been called upon, but for reasons unknown, he still doesn’t boast a guaranteed place in United’s starting XI.
The 26-year-old has scored three goals and made three assists for United in 13 starts across all competitions this term. Herrera has lofty ambitions for himself with United, but the Spaniard has been left frustrated at times with lack of game time offered to him. He still has two-and-a-half-years remaining on his contract, and United have no hurry to sell him at the moment.
Juventus may need to bolster their midfield options, having sold Andrea Pirlo and Arturo Vidal over the summer, and despite bringing in players like Hernanes and Sami Khedira, the Old Lady are still looking for quality additions in midfield.
Herrera will be a regular starter at Juventus, and he will get a platform to play in the Champions League regularly, which will provide him a better chance to impress his national team manager and break into the Spain national squad.
According to the report, a fee in the region of €30-35m (£22.1-25.8m) would be enough to prise him away from Old Trafford.
Sadio Mane bid rejected
Manchester United made contact with Southampton to enquire the availability of Sadio Mane – one of their long term targets – in the January transfer window.
However, the Red Devils were told the player will not be sold this month, per ESPN sources.
Southampton have maintained their stance from the beginning that Mane would not be sold, and it seems they are sticking to the policy of keeping hold of their star players as they look to bounce back strongly in the league, after a wretched run of form over the past one month.