Why Manchester United should go all out for Marcelo Brozovic in January
Even though they had a convincing opening day victory over Chelsea, it’s been a difficult start to the season for Manchester United.
The Red Devils shared a point with Wolves and drew 1-1 with ten-man Southampton just a week after losing to Crystal Palace at home. Their recent performances have seen the pundits and the fans question why Ole Gunnar Solskjaer didn’t invest on midfielders during the summer transfer window?
Solskjaer has preferred a 4-2-3-1 formation this season with Paul Pogba and Scott McTominay as the double-pivot. The pair has continually failed to dictate the tempo of the game, with Pogba a much more attack-minded player and McTominay, not exactly a holding midfielder.
Nemanja Matic apparently isn’t quite suited to play in the quick, counter-attacking style of football Solskjaer wants his United team to play. The Serbian international is capable of doing a job or two but he doesn’t have the legs to press and work tirelessly for an entire game.
Meanwhile, Fred hasn’t kicked a ball yet in the new season as Solskjaer feels the diminutive Brazilian isn’t quite ready.
After the exits of Marouane Fellaini and Ander Herrera earlier this year, United made a big mistake by not reinforcing their midfield options and that has cost them points.
Thus, it is clear that bolstering midfield should be at the top of the priority list when United make further additions to the squad.
Back in 2017, a report from the Sun had claimed that United were interested in signing Inter Milan midfielder Marcelo Brozovic. While a move didn’t come to fruition then, the January transfer window would be the perfect time for the Red Devils to reignite their interest in the Inter Milan star.
Marcelo Brozovic, 26 has undergone a tremendous transformation in the last 18 months, establishing himself as one of the best midfielders in the Serie A.
He starred in the World Cup last year, guiding Croatia to the competition’s final only to lose at the hands of France. The Croatian replicated his form for Inter and played a crucial part in the club’s qualification to the Champions League.
The 26-year-old has managed to hit the ground running in the 2019/20 season under new manager Antonio Conte, forming a strong midfield partnership with summer signing Stefano Sensi. There’s a lot to like about Brozovic’s performances in the last two years.
The Croat has demonstrated he is comfortable playing in a double pivot alongside Sensi and pick passes for the willing runners in the final third. He can also operate as a deep-lying playmaker, control the tempo of the game as well as break the opposition’s advances. He tends to break-up play efficiently before recycling the ball quickly to release pressure.
Brozovic can influence the pace of the game by showing great intelligence while moving his team forward with his distribution skills. He is a player who is extremely confident in his abilities on the ball and his presence in the United midfield would also allow McTominay and Pogba to reprise their roles they are better suited for.
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Plus, the ex-Dinamo Zagreb man will add much-needed energy, calmness and stability to the midfield, whilst being Matic’s long-term replacement.
It would be difficult for the Red Devils to sign Brozovic due to lack of Champions League football. But, with the player inching closer to his peak years, they cannot afford to miss out on the World Cup finalist and must break their bank to secure his signature in January.