The midfielder in question is Sporting Lisbon star and Portuguese International William Carvalho. According to reports from talkSPORT Carvalho is set for a £35 million pound transfer to Manchester United. The midfielder is only 22 and with such a hefty price tag, is expected to be a regular for the first team. This leads to the obvious question. Is he good enough for Manchester United?
The 22 year Angolan born beast (there is no other word for it) is very strong and has a great physical presence. In fact it is nearly impossible to knock the 6″2 off the ball. His physical presence becomes even more prominent when it is coupled with his endless energy and pace. Many do not appreciate this quality because they don’t see it often enough and that is down to his fantastic positioning
He also has a crunching tackle which will knock any opponent off the ball. Not only are his tackles powerful, they are also accurate and thus effective. Despite this he has managed to pick up 8 yellow cards in 24 appearances for his club. This gives us a hint on the destructive type of role he plays for Sporting Lisbon. Carvalho has also scored 4 goals for Sporting in 24 appearances. This shows he also has an eye for goal many defensive midfielders lack. It also shows that despite playing such a defensive role he can still be found across the pitch in more attacking positions.
However one of my favourtie qualities is his positioning. Like all great players he seems to have more time on the ball than most, despite playing as a holding midfielder. This is because he has an intelligent football brain and knows where the space is. Speed aside, Carvalho is quite similar to Yaya Toure.
Ricardo Moura, manager of Fatima, who play in the Portuguese 2ND division has even compared to ex-Arsenal Captain and World Cup winner Patrick Viera. He continues to say that Carvalho is ‘more technically evolved’ than the Arsenal legend. While this may seem like the ramblings of a madman, his displays for Sporting this season show him to be a very complete midfield player.
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What Can He Add To Manchester United’s Midfield
You might think at his point he sounds like a Fellaini. While the Belgian and him do share some physical similarities the Sporting Lisbon player has a key asset that sets him apart. His quick speed adds energy into the Manchester United midfield. This is an important characteristic we have been lacking.
Cercle Brugge manager, Foeke Booy, who oversaw his development last season as a loan player, tips him to become ‘a powerful box-to-box’ midfielder. This is exactly the type of midfielder all great teams have. Manchester City have Fernandinho and Liverpool have Henderson.
United have been lacking a player who is a box-to-box midfielder and can cover a lot of ground quickly. Carvalho could fill this gap. Carvalho would also certainly add a lot of mobility to our sluggish midfield and would rejuvenate Carrick as he would have more time and space to pick out the perfect ball.
Is He Worth It?
Despite his great qualities Carvalho is still way ward in his passing and often opts for the sideways pass. However as a 22 year old and playing alongside one of the greatest passers in the Premiership in Carrick he will definitely improve.
Is he worth £35 million currently? No. However circumstances at Manchester United such as poor domestic form, no Champions League and competition from other clubs, mean we will be paying an inflated price for the Portuguese International. The youngster still has a bright future ahead, hopefully at United and if he does live up to expectations and if he can adapt to the Premier League then he will be worth £35 million and he will be good enough to become a Manchester United player.
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