Monday, June 27, 2022

Manchester United Offered A Swap Deal For This Barcelona Winger: What Should Be Rangnick’s Play?

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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 segment with El Chiringuito, journalist Jose Alvarez mentioned that Manchester United have been offered a swap deal for Barcelona winger Ousmane Dembele which involves Anthony Martial moving in the other direction. It is understood that the Red Devils have been given an opportunity to swap one French winger for another as Ralf Rangnick looks to strengthen his squad this month.

Dembele’s Injury Ravaged Season In Spanish Football

Dembele has endured another injury-plagued campaign at the Nou Camp but has still managed to produce a few influential displays as part of the Barca attack. The Vernon-born attacker has been involved in 11 matches for the Catalans this season, netting one goal and securing two assists in the process on all fronts.

The 24-year-old has been a good performer in the limited game time he has received over the past few months as he is averaging 2.8 shots, 1.7 key passes, 1.8 crosses and 2.3 dribbles per 90 minutes in La Liga. He has even been tidy when distributing possession in the final third, as evidenced by his pass completion rate of 85.1% in league football (stats via whoscored).

Manchester United (Ousmane Dembele)
Sevilla’s Dutch midfielder Karim Rekik (L) vies with Barcelona’s French forward Ousmane Dembele during the Spanish league football match between Sevilla FC and FC Barcelona at the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan stadium in Seville on December 21, 2021. (Photo by CRISTINA QUICLER / AFP) (Photo by CRISTINA QUICLER/AFP via Getty Images)
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What Should Be Manchester United Boss Ralf Rangnick’s Play With Regards To A Martial-Dembele Swap Deal?

Dembele is blessed with electric pace which he can use to lose his marker out on the wide areas. He excels at getting a few shots in on-target and can set up some clear-cut chances for his teammates in the attacking end of the pitch. The France international can be a delight to watch when he is dribbling at full swing and is a decent crosser of the ball as well. However, frequent injuries have completely hampered his progress at the Nou Camp.

When compared to Dembele’s recent time with Barca, Anthony Martial has also struggled to earn regular playing minutes at Man United this season. Thus, it makes sense for both players to opt for a change of scenery in search of greener pastures this year.

We can expect Dembele to add more pace and goals to Ralf Rangnick‘s attack if he can remain injury-free in this calendar year. Hence, the Red Devils boss would be wise to bring the Frenchman to England before the end of this month even if he has to give up Martial in the process.

Martial has fallen out of favour with Rangnick, so it is only logical for the Mancunian outfit to ship him out of the club this January in exchange of someone like Dembele, who is equally talented but has a poor injury record.

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