Manchester United’s odds have been significantly shortened to sign Barcelona midfielder Pedro, as manager Louis Van Gaal looks to add some speed and creativity to his new look side.
Pedro has been forced to watch from the bench for the majority of the season as Barcelona’s Holy Trinity of Messi, Neymar and Suarez guided the Catalan Giants to a hugely impressive treble in Luis Enrique’s first season in charge of the club.
Though acting as cover for the star trio, the Spanish international has produced a number of quality displays resulting in a number of top Premier League clubs including Liverpool and Chelsea also showing interest in the wide man at some point or another.
Van Gaal has spoken of his desire to sign a player who can drive with the ball and make things happen in attacking positions, which is something Pedro has proven time and time again at Barca. And at €22 million, his reported buyout clause, it could be a bit of a bargain should the deal materialise. Especially as Angel di Maria could be on the verge of a move to French Champions PSG.
di Maria vs Pedro
The Argentinian international had a seemingly difficult first season since his record-breaking arrival from Real Madrid last summer, making only 27 league appearences. Pedro also struggled to break into the Barca side but did feature 35 times though he played less minutes as most of his appearances came from the bench.
Di Maria, though made more of an impact in terms of statistics from a creative point of view.
For instance,the United man had the advantage in terms of assists over his Spanish counterpart edging him 10 to 6. His contribution led him to second in the Premiership assist charts behind Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas. Impressive for a man kept out of the side by Ashley Young at times.
Di Maria demonstrated his superioriry in terms of creating chances which was more than double that of the Barca winger. Over 50 compared to Pedro’s 25. And it doesn’t end there. The United man also trumped Pedro in the key pass stakes notching an incredible 41 to the Spaniard’s 19.
The only things the Barca man outperformed Di Maria was in terms of passing accuracy which is expected from any player in that side, and goals where he scored 6 to the Argentine’s 3.
So what does this tell you then? It goes some way to saying that di Maria is a world class player who can perform above the average even during a ‘poor’ season. Which you’d kind of expect from a £60million player.
We are also told that Pedro has been impressive but nowhere near as effective as the United midfielfer. Yet given the opportunity could be come a vital part of any side. Just ask Messi, who must be aware that Pedro contributed more to his goal tally than anyone else but Suarez last season.
Van Gaal will be doing very little wrong to add the former World Cup winner to his already star-studded squad so long as he is not a replacement for Angel di Maria.
If it is the case and United do decide to sell, it is most certainly a step in so many wrong directions. Not to say Pedro is a bad player as he will make United a more dynamic side, but I do not believe he has the potential to reach the potential heights of the Argentine come next season.