One of the longer running sagas of this summer, Cesc Fabregas to Manchester United is a rumour that can’t stay out of the sports pages. The question to whether Manchester United need a midfielder to be signed is hardly up for debate, but the real issue may lie in if Fabregas is the man they really should be after but whether it would be better to go for someone at either better value or a different type of player. The issue for United is whether they are to invest largely in Fabregas – or if they look to be potentially more efficient with their money and split the funds to perhaps buy a couple of different players in the role like Eriksen and Fellaini.
Fabregas is clearly a top quality player, although there are questions that remain over his best role in the side and particularly if Moyes is going to operate a 4-2-3-1 system as it would be hard to adapt Cesc into a deeper player where he would not necessarily be used to full effect playing in the pivot. His creative game is debatably not going to be used to full effect if used as a 10 and that United have several better options in this position with this season potentially going to be the biggest breakthrough for the promising Shinji Kagawa. Fabregas would generally be seen at his best as one of the more advanced players either operating in a central role of the ‘christmas tree’ formation or in a conventional 4-3-3 that gives him the freedom to get into the box and support the forwards but also function in a more defensive way and pick up some ball winning duties.
The creative addition that Fabregas could bring from deeper in midfield would be greatly influential to United, but the question still remains whether this is what they really need and that in fact a Fellaini type player would be more key to ‘sure up’ their midfield at this time as Kagawa and Rooney provide the creativity where the midfield needs more strength rather than the flair of Fabregas.This is where – for similar money – Fellaini and Eriksen would offer a better alternative to the Fabregas signing as the partnership of Carrick and Fellaini would have the perfect balance of power and precision passing at the base of the 4-2-3-1 midfield whilst Eriksen would give the opportunity for Moyes to rotate the player in the advanced playmaker position as Eriksen would give a different option to Kagawa that he may find beneficial to be able to drop deeper and add to their midfield game or convert to a 4-3-3.
Overall, this saga with Fabregas seems to be dragging out into a typical summer transfer mess as mixed messages come from all parts and some absurd transfers figures are mentioned, is Cesc really worth £40 million? I wouldn’t say so, not at this point in time, maybe when he left Arsenal but his career seems to have stalled since his return to Spain, still a top midfielder in Europe but not perhaps as assured in his game or his role in the side. These factors would make it that he isn’t the current ideal signing for United – especially not at this price – and they may be better off spreading their money to cater for more options and styles of play from their midfield that could be offered by Fellaini, Eriksen, Song or De Rossi with great ball carrying and tackling options rather than the Spanish way of Cesc that wouldn’t seem to fit in with Moyes’ or United’s style.