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Obertan deal looks real + The Sun reckons Huntelaar’s next

The entire press corps seem to have latched onto the Obertan story, as expected. The president was quoted as saying he’d be delighted to let him go, and The Sun thinks it is an £8m deal. Going by some accounts, United’s interest in Obertan has surprised circles in France, as he spent half of last season playing for Lorient — a middling Ligue 1 club.

The focus, according to the Sun — who are always ahead of the game [they are capable of reporting news even before an event] — now shifts to Klaas Jan Huntelaar of Real Madrid. We’ve been linked with the Dutchman countless times in the past and we’ve already seen several reports linking us to him this summer. Unsubstantiated rumours — that Milan’s offer was perhaps too low for Madrid — compete with other unsubstantiated rumours — that Meeeeeelan offered to take him on loan.

The Sun maybe a paragon of virtue, but I will believe it when I see it.

If we were to assume, for the purposes of trying to make a point, we sign Huntelaar, then it should ideally leave Ferguson with the central midfield slot to fill with a dynamic defensive midfielder; someone who can dominate and free up Carrick. The breed of the dynamic defensive midfielder is rare though, and quite expensive too. Yaya Toure is a possibility if Mascherano goes to Barcelona, although Toure would be out in January for the African Cup of Nations. Arsenal target and Fiorentina hard-man Felipe Melo, has been bigged up after an impressive showing at the Confederations Cup. He has earned a reputation of collecting a lot of cards. Truthfully, I’d gladly take such a player in the Premiership. He’ll surely concede far fewer fouls here, over the flop-and-dive-heavy Serie A.

Of course, in a dream world I’d take Essien. Which means I should stop writing right now…

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Meanwhile, in case you haven’t seen this. Something to amuse yourselves with, if things aren’t necessarily interesting at work.



  1. Grognard

    9 July 2009 at 15:56

    @BAMF: Huntelaar is the real deal. What stands against him is a bias created by the changing face of the game itself. Hentelaar is the perfect striker for the old 4-4-2 system. The same system that made RVN such a success with United. He is a goal poacher with goal poacher instincts and an ability to make the smallest chance count. Agile, able to head the ball, bicycle kick it, score with both feet are parts of his game.

    Frankly mate, you don’t have to buy into his ability. The fact you don’t know enough about him because you haven’t watched him enough is all the information I need to know in this debate. And he is not the first or last great player to get the snub or be mistreated at Real Madrid. They have their favorites over there and as I said before, if you do not fit in to the class system over there, you are quickly looked at as an outsider. Come on man, van der Vaart, Sneijder, Drenthe, Robben are all great players who have been poorly treated and misused at Madrid. Poor spending policies where they over saturate a few positions with too many world class stars and then they find themselves thin in the areas that count defensively.

    Huntelaar is not Ronaldo and no he’s probably not RVN either. What he is really is just a good striker whose strength is not dribbling or one on one abilities. He’s not known for pace or for tracking back. What he is known for is putting a bulge in the old onion bag. He scores goals. Gerd Mueller the greatest striker of them all was known for many of those skills that are missing in Huntelaar’s game but like him, he scored goals any old way and many of them just because he had that golden touch and that special instinct to be at the right place at the right time. That’s a gift you cannot teach.

    He’s simply a case of substance over style. Having seen him play well over 50 times I feel I can safely say I know what I am talking about. Yes he scored like it’s nobody’s business in Holland and many like to use that as mark against him. The fact is he scored nearly a goal a game when they started him at Madrid. It’s only when he cam off the bench where he was not affective. Many great players struggle to play well off the bench. The fact Ramos didn’t clue in when he scored 8 goals in 10 starts during a 10 game winning streak by Madrid should be a clue as to how bad a manager Ramos has become and how his reign was hampered by politics because as soon as Higuain was healthy again, Huntelaar was placed on the bench and Madrid went on to fold like a tent the rest of the way culminating in their most humiliating home loss ever, 6-2 to Barca where Hunter started on the bench.

    Finally, as for Rooney, I remember how successful he was playing off the shoulder and next to RVN. This is why I want Huntelaar. Hunter scores goals but he will make Rooney that much greater.

  2. Grognard

    9 July 2009 at 16:01

    @RedDevilEddy: Cana is not a player. He is an animal. He is an assassin. He hasn’t got an ounce of footballing skill. I am shocked that you and some others find a player like that as an attractive buy. Have we become so scared that we need to hire a dirty thug to patrol our midfield? I think not. Toure would be more like the player we need. Too bad Melo is off the market. And I still fantasize about Hernanes or even Sneijder.

  3. Grognard

    9 July 2009 at 16:02

    @Craig Mc: But you have found somebody who is always wright and never wrrr. ME! 😎 😀 😀

  4. Grognard

    9 July 2009 at 16:06

    @Redrich: I like Berbatov a lot but he is a very difficult player to build a successful team around. His style is such a hard one to match with other players. You cannot afford to have selfish players around him. Berbatov’s playing style is far from selfish as he is a sublime play maker and assist man but inorder to have the kind of impact and success we expect from him, wingers and midfielders need to get him the ball. Tevez and especially Ronaldo had a problem playing with him because they did not do what I just said. Carrick played well with him because Carrick got him the ball. To bad we don’t have any other great play making midfielders like Carrick to add to this. Giggs and Scholes are well past being counted on for this.

  5. Grognard

    9 July 2009 at 16:16

    @Onkar: For me the player who will bring the most out of Rooney is Hunter. He is more like RVN and we all remember that Rooney was quite good when partnered with RVN. He needs that true old style striker’s shoulder to play off. Rooney in that environment is the ideal second striker. Berbatov doe snot play that way and in fact is more comfortable higher up playing off of somebody elses shoulder too. So for me Hunter-Rooney is the best combination with Berba and Owen off the bench. Rooney/Owen is the next best combination because they played well together for England and seemed to have a decent understanding. Berbatov can play either position which leads me to believe he is the most versatile but his languid style and lack of real drive and energy makes him a liability off the bench. I love Huntelaar but I am not sure right now we have any room on this team to guarantee him the starts he needs to show his quality. And I am not one who believes playing Berba less is going to help him much either. It’s a tough time for Fergie to figure out just what he needs to do.

    My solution is simple. I love Berbatov but I so much love Huntelaar more. Because of that I would sell Berba to a team like Juventus who seem interested in him. I’d hate to see him go but if that ensured the playing time for my boy Huntelaar, I would do it. This would also ensure more time for Owen who I think can be great coming off the bench and also leave room for more playing time for Macheda. Welbeck I would loan out in January. I wait until then just in case Owen gets hurt.

  6. Grognard

    9 July 2009 at 16:20

    @colver: I don’t see us buying Huntelaar either.
    I see Fergie making a real effort to buy Ashley Young and a midfielder like Yaya Toure. As much as I dream about Huntelaar, we are five deep at that position and we need to find the answer to our Rome debacle in midfield. I also feel that Fergie has given up on Nani and therefore, Ashley Young is a must for us. I hope I am wrong about Nani but i just have a bad feeling about it that his time is up with United.

  7. rossa

    16 July 2009 at 15:16

    fergie sign cattermole, tough tackling no nonsense, reminds me of roy keane and will only cost 40 pence compared to other players

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