Thursday, December 8, 2022

Newcastle United Locked In 3 Way Battle For Manchester United Ace: Should Bruce Get Him On Board?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

According to a recent report by The Daily Star, Newcastle United are locked in a three-way battle for Manchester United midfield ace Andreas Pereira this summer. The same source has also stated that the Magpies are not the only ones interested in acquiring the services of the Brazilian playmaker as they will also face competition from Everton and West Ham United in pursuit of him in this off-season.

Pereira’s Underwhelming Spell At The Theatre Of Dreams This Season

The Belgium-born talent has experienced a lacklustre season at Old Trafford after struggling to perform at a high level under the tutelage of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer. He has featured in 37 matches for the Red Devils this term, scoring two goals and providing four assists in all competitions which highlight his lack of productivity going forward.

To his credit, Pereira has averaged 1.6 shots, 1.3 key passes and 0.7 dribbles per game in the Premier League and the UEFA Europa League this season. However, he has been a bit sloppy with his ball-distribution after completing 77.6% of attempted passes in league football so far (stats via whoscored).

The Man United youth product had also earned one senior cap for the Brazilian national team when he came off the bench to play against El Salvador in an international friendly back in 2018. Maybe a change of scenery this summer could provide him with regular first-team opportunities which might aid his chances of earning a place back in Tite’s squad for next year’s Copa America following the competition’s postponement as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Newcastle United locked in a three-way battle for Pereira who is in action in the photo
Andreas Pereira of Manchester United holds off Ciaran Clark of Newcastle United during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Manchester United at St. James Park on October 06, 2019, in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)

What Does The Brazilian Midfield Ace Offer On The Pitch?

Pereira possesses excellent ball-control that enables him to make some penetrative runs without losing possession in the opposition half. He is not afraid to strike the ball with power and precision from long range and has got the eye to pick out a killer pass in the attacking third of the field. However, the Brazilian lacks the stamina and strength to dominate the 50-50 midfield battles with the opposition which is one of the many reasons why he has struggled to give a good account of himself at Old Trafford over the past few seasons.

Should The Magpies Get Pereira On Board This Summer?

A playmaker of Pereira’s skillset will be a welcome addition to Steve Bruce’s squad at St. James’ Park. The Magpies have often lacked creativity in their midfield department, so it makes sense for them to target the Man United squad player this summer.

Pereira will not only add more variety and depth to Bruce’s squad but also offer some healthy competition for the likes of Jonjo Shelvey, Matty Longstaff, Sean Longstaff, Isaac Hayden and Jack Colback at Tyneside next season. With all things considered, Newcastle should get the Brazilian midfielder on board before the start of the new campaign as he could turn out to be a valuable component of their squad in the years to come.

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