Following the signings of Tom Heaton and Jadon Sancho, and with defender Raphael Varane soon to follow, Manchester United are now prioritising the signing of a central midfielder in this window.
MEN Sport understands that United are prioritising the signing of a central midfielder over the next few weeks amid the uncertainty over Paul Pogba’s future, with the Reds midfielder recently rejecting a new contract offer from the club, which has seen the Frenchman heavily linked with a move to Paris Saint-Germain.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side are interested ih Rennes midfielder Eduardo Camavinga, who is one of the most sought-after young talents in world football and just happens to be out of contract at the Ligue 1 club next summer, so would be available for a cut-price transfer fee.
* Click here to subscribe to Level up! The Esports and Gaming Show on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Podcasts and Spreaker.*
However, a deal between United and Camavinga appears unlikely at the moment, after it emerged last week he would prefer a move to Spain over the Premier League.
But with so long to go in this summer’s transfer window, things could change very quickly.
So to gauge the potential impact of Camavinga at United, we simulated next season with the youngster at the club, and this is what happened.
To set up this simulation, we used the Football Manager 2021 editor to arrange for Rennes midfielder Eduardo Camavinga to join United ahead of next season.
Eduardo Camavinga’s FM21 profile
We also transferred Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane to United to make the simulation as realistic as possible.
With Camavinga in the United squad next season, this is what happened…
Eduardo Camavinga’s 2021/22 season at United
Despite being just 18, Camavinga was thrust into being a regular for United during this simulated season, with Solskjaer recognising his quality both on and off the ball.
Let’s take a look at some of Camavinga’s stats for United during this simulated 2021/22 season.
Camavinga’s stats for United during this simulated 2021/22 season
The French midfielder made a total of 52 appearances for the Reds in all competitions, this included 45 stars and seven sub appearances.
And Camavinga made a real impact both on and off the ball.
In terms of attacking and creative influence, he scored 10 goals and registered 10 assists for the club in all competitions, whilst also registering 77 key passes.
Those stats saw him ranked very highly against his United teammates.
Only Bruno Fernandes and Jadon Sancho registered more assists and made more key passes than Camavinga
In fact, only Bruno Fernandes and Jadon Sancho registered more assists and made more key passes than the youngster.
Camavinga also had a strong campaign defensively.
The midfielder played a key role in protecting the United back four, making a lot of tackles and interceptions throughout the campaign.
Overall, Camavinga won 124 tackles in 52 appearances, made 182 interceptions and had a 71% tackle success rate.
Overall, Camavinga won 124 tackles in 52 appearances, made 182 interceptions and had a 71% tackle success rate
He also had an impressive 90% passing accuracy rating.
At the end of the 2021/22 season, Football Manager 2021 put together an overall best United XI, based on performances, statistics and other metrics.
This is how the best United XI looked in 2021/22 according to FM21.
Full United best XI:Henderson; Wan-Bissaka, Maguire, Varane, Shaw; McTominay, Camavinga; Sancho, Fernandes, Rashford; Cavani.
So, how did United perform in all competitions in our simulated season with Camavinga in the squad?
United’s 2021/22 season results with Camavinga
Here’s how the final 2021/22 league table looked once the simulation finished at the end of May 2022.
Man United were locked in an unprecedented five-team title race, with Man City, Liverpool, Chelsea and Arsenal all winning more than 80 points.
How the final 2021/22 league table looked once the simulation finished at the end of May 2022
In the end, it was City who won the league, but United finished just three points behind Guardiola’s side.
United had a stunning defensive record with Camavinga in the squad, conceding only 29 goals in 38 games, but they scored 20 goals fewer than City.
Still the Reds’ points tally of 87 is significantly higher than in previous campaigns, with United winning 74 points last season.
And there were improvements in Europe too because United were exceptional in the Champions League.
Solskjaer’s team beat Lazio, Celtic, Bayern Munich, Atalanta, Inter, Napoli and Atletico Madrid, eventually lifting the Champions League trophy after extra-time in the final
After a stunning campaign, in which United didn’t even lose a single game, Solskjaer’s team beat Lazio, Celtic, Bayern Munich, Atalanta, Inter, Napoli and Atletico Madrid, eventually lifting the Champions League trophy after extra-time in the final!
Due to an injury to Bruno Fernandes, Donny van de Beek started the final against Atletico Madrid, and the Dutchman justified his inclusion by opening the scoring in the 44th minute.
In the FA Cup and Carabao Cup, Solskjaer mostly fielded weakened sides, so they went out in the early stages.
Football Manager 2021 predicts that Eduardo Camavinga would be a great signing for Manchester United this summer.
This simulation predicts that the youngster could play a huge role for United in central midfield, providing a threat on the ball whilst also making them more solid in defence too.
As ever, these simulations are just a bit of fun and an interesting way of trying to predict the future, but there’s no doubting Eduardo Camavinga’s talent.
Would you be happy to see Eduardo Camavinga sign for United this summer? Let us know in the comments.