Wednesday, November 30, 2022

Manchester United Reportedly Made Huge Bid For Barcelona Star: Would The Red Devils Suit Him?

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For a long time now, Manchester United have been interested in the services of Sancho, and the English star has been tipped to sign for the Red Devils. However, in an unexpected turn of events, Sport now reveals that the club see Ansu Fati as a possible replacement of the Dortmund man and they have made a bid of €100 million for the Barca teenager. The response from the Catalan club has been a clear though, with the club negating any such potential transfer as the men in charge of the side see him as a player for the long term.

Ansu Fati and his rise

Hailed as a generational talent, the Spaniard has drawn the attention of the entire football world with his performances for the senior side. At 17, he has already appeared in 16 matches, in large part because of the injuries sustained by Suarez and Dembele. However, he has justified his inclusion into the senior side with his temperament and ability to go head to head with the best defenders of the league.

Fati has been deployed at both the flanks, although playing on the left side comes more naturally to him. This can also be due to the factor that a certain Lionel Messi normally plies his trade at the right, and the youngster’s freedom to cut inside and get involved in the transitional play is affected when operating as a subordinate to the Argentine superstar.

The main quality of the starlet is his dribbling skills, although the statistics will say that he has only made 1.1 dribbles per match in the league. However, there is more to him than it meets the eye as he often tries to move up the left side and get in a 1v1 situation with the right-back, getting the better of the defender in the duel.

LONDON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 01: Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Manager of Manchester United applauds the traveling fans after the Premier League match between Arsenal FC and Manchester United at Emirates Stadium on January 01, 2020 in London, United Kingdom. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

There is a youthful exuberance in Ansu Fati’s play as he tends to get involved in every movement of the game for his side, looking to create an opening. This forward play has often resulted in him getting dispossessed, and the managers would believe that with time, there should be a balance in his game.

His ball distribution is also noteworthy as we have often seen him cut inside from the left side and keep his calm under immense pressure from the opposition defenders, before eventually setting the ball up for Messi to take a shot at the goal. This term he has racked up an impressive 82.9% of successful passes in La Liga, and with time this could only improve.

The problem he would face at Manchester United

Barcelona take an approach where Fati need not put any crosses from the wings. Their whole game-plan is dependent on the quality of their forwards to be fluid and moving around the final third of the opposition, making overlapping runs and one-twos with each other. Man United, on the contrary, like any traditional English side expect crosses to flow in from the flanks and the centre-forward to take a big leap before driving the ball home.

This is exactly where the youngster could face the problem as he would have to make the transition from La Masia to Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s team. This term, Fati has an average of 0.3 long balls and 0.3 crosses per game, a figure which has to go up at United drastically. Having considered these aspects, the Old Trafford faithful would still like to believe that the Spaniard has the tactical versatility to make adequate changes to his playing style to suit the needs of the English side.

Stats from Whoscored.

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