The Mirror carries the story today according to which, Antonio Valencia flew in last night for a medical to sign for United. It’s only the Mirror that’s running the story, sans quotes, but considering the Ronaldo transfer was confirmed at the end of last week, it was only a matter of time this happened.
The sum quoted is £16m which is what I have a problem with. Personally, any sum over £12-14m is too much for a winger who’s been consistent, but not outstanding. True, he’s an out and out winger and does give us some width.
But his stats don’t necessarily pop out to hold anyone’s fancy. I would hope this is only a straight buy, unlike other media sources that revolved around using Nani as a makeweight in the deal; that, to me, would be unacceptable because despite his reduced appearances last season he deserves a season where he’s given the chance to express himself and step out of Ronaldo’s massive shadow. He may never come close to Ronaldo’s ability, but he still deserves a chance.
Valencia again, might be a player that hugs the touchline and tries to cross it in, but our system has evolved to the extent that we don’t really have a striker that lurks in and around the box. Berbatov may have been bought for that purpose, but his lack of pace makes it difficult to have him in the area during a counter. I would pitch for Huntelaar, but there seems to be very little talk about the Dutchman. And I think Ferguson might opt for giving the likes of Macheda and Welbeck more of a chance the next season.
Valencia might be an improvement over Park or a now past-it Ryan Giggs (at least as a winger), but he’s an expensive one at that. But then, we seem to be having little options in the market with players either pricing themselves out of a move or just declaring their interest to play for Madrid.
I hope he turns out to be a great buy; to be honest, the compilation video (not that they are the final say on any player) show him to be a more direct player. It will be great to be proved wrong on him. But for now I’m not sure I can say I’m overjoyed by this transfer. I’m sure I may be stuck up in the ‘we-need-a-Ronaldo-type-player’ mode, but there are so little of them around these days. I believe Ferguson will change the system to a more orthodox 4-4-2 system now.
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In other news, Rooney, in an interview with the Times has made it clear that he’s ready to flourish if he gets a more central role — which is his preferred role.
The confidence in the lad is good to see, and I’m sure the manager sees it too, but has perhaps been hamstrung by the need of his system, which sought to accommodate Ronaldo. Now that he’s gone, I see SAF go out of his way to satisfy Rooney. If he does that and stays injury free, I can see Rooney help shoulder a burden of our goals.
We have also been linked to Sergio Aguero, and his release clause is well within our reach. I like the player, but with Berbatov and Rooney expected to partner upfront, Aguero might be bought to provide a creative spark in a wide floating role behind the strikers — if at all he’s bought.
And that should wrap it up for today. Updates, if any, on the Valencia transfer will be added to this post. So watch this space.
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Also don’t forget to hop over to Scott’s ROM blog who is running a Summer competition for which, anyone with a passing experience dabbling with MS Paint can join.
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