Manchester United are one of the biggest football clubs on the planet. The Red Devils have lost their way somewhat since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013 but Jose Mourinho has managed to keep United competitive – winning two trophies last season before taking the club up to second in the Premier League table this time around.
According to reports, United have acted quickly in the summer transfer window – Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred looks set to move to Old Trafford for an estimated £52 million. The 25-year-old has played for his native Brazil eight times and has made over 100 appearances at club level since joining the current Ukrainian champions back in 2013.
Central midfield is arguably the most important area of the pitch and United have struggled to replace the likes of Roy Keane and Paul Scholes in recent times. With Michael Carrick also hanging up his boots this summer, there is a clear need to bulk up the midfield area. Looking at his style, he ticks all the right boxes to succeed in the Premier League.
Gifted with the ball at his feet, dribbling is Fred’s greatest strength. The Brazilian averaged a staggering 3.3 successful dribbles per game during the 2017/18 Champions League; with an impressive success rate of 95%. In addition, he is incisive in the passing game and Fred could help to lift the pressure on Paul Pogba’s shoulders. Those two could form a solid partnership.
Mourinho is determined to take United back to the Premier League summit – but are the Red Devils capable of toppling arch-rivals Manchester City next season? At the time of writing, United are 5/1 in bet365’s football betting markets and plenty of punters will be quietly confident of an Old Trafford celebration. Fred has the extensive skill set to feature regularly for United and he could be their difference maker.
Fred’s biggest weakness? His size – or lack of it. At 5 foot 7 inches, he is short and critics have argued that he will struggle with the physicality of England’s top flight. Alongside the likes of Pogba and Nemanja Matic, he should be fine though. After all, United don’t need a giant in the middle of the park; they need somebody who can unlock defences.
United will need more though. City finished 19 points clear of their closest rivals last season and Pep Guardiola’s side will also strengthen this summer. Mourinho has the blueprint for top-flight success and United are edging closer. With two or three new signings, United can regain their spot at the forefront of English football.
A first Premier League title since Sir Alex Ferguson beckons for United but Mourinho’s men cannot afford to take anyone lightly. Confidence is key to success and Fred may head to Old Trafford after a World Cup triumph if Brazil fulfil their potential. A transition from Ukraine to English football won’t be straightforward but Fred looks primed to enjoy a long and successful career at the Theatre of Dreams.