Friday, January 21, 2022

Manchester United Eyeing A Move For This Barcelona Winger: What Will He Bring To Old Trafford?

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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.

In a recent report, Mundo Deportivo revealed that Manchester United are eyeing a move for Barcelona winger Ousmane Dembele. It has been claimed that the Red Devils are hoping to convince the French talent to seal a move to Old Trafford in January when he will be free to come to a pre-contract agreement with any foreign club of his choosing.

Dembele’s Growing Frustrations With Injuries This Season

Dembele is under contract at the Nou Camp until the end of this campaign. Hence, Barca would have no choice but to let him go if they fail to agree on a new deal with the player. The 24-year-old is having another injury-plagued season in Spanish football as he has missed a lot of games because of a knee problem, and now a hamstring injury.

The 27-time France international has only made one appearance for the Catalans so far. In contrast, he had a far more joyous spell in the previous campaign when he banged in 11 goals and earned five assists in 44 matches for Barca in all competitions. Dembele performed well to average 1.8 shots, 1.3 key passes and 2.1 dribbles per game in La Liga. The Frenchman even distributed the ball relatively well in the opponent’s half, as evidenced by his pass completion rate of 85.8% in the top tier of Spanish football (stats via whoscored).

Manchester United (Ousmane Dembele)
PARIS, FRANCE – JUNE 08: Ousmane Dembele of France looks on during the international friendly match between France and Bulgaria at Stade de France on June 08, 2021 in Paris, France. (Photo by Aurelien Meunier/Getty Images)
The 4th Official uses images provided by the following image agency: Getty Images (https://www.gettyimages.de/)
Imago Images (https://www.imago-images.de/)

What Will Dembele Bring To Manchester United?

When fit and firing on all cylinders, Dembele is quite exciting to watch as he tends to use his pace and dribbling ability to make some impressive runs with the ball in the final third. He has got the eye to pick out a killer pass in and around the opposition penalty box and is usually a decent finisher up top.

The French sensation can even link up play well with his teammates out on the wide areas. However, he has been far too injury-prone during his time in Spanish football which makes it a huge risk for Man United if they decide to move in for him next year.

Even though Dembele will be a free agent in the summer of 2022, there are no guarantees that he would be able to prove his fitness at Old Trafford where he might struggle to cope with the physical nature of English football.

However, if the French speedster can remain fit, we can expect him to bring a lot of pace and goals to Man United’s attack. He will also increase competition for places within the Red Devils‘ squad. Still, the Mancunian giants would be better off opting for a more reliable attack than Dembele next summer.

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