Is Brazilian set for a move in January?
Things are showing little sign of improving for Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United. And it seems summer signing Fred could be set to jump ship in the January window.
Speaking to media in the wake of Saturday’s 2-2 draw at Southampton, he claimed “the coach (Jose Mourinho) has chosen not to put me in the team, it's his choice”.
And the 25-year-old went further, by linking a lack of Old Trafford game-time to his recent absence from the Brazil squad.
With a January exit certainly not implausible, we look at three sides who could be a good fit for Fred…
Bayern are in unfamiliar territory at present. Niko Kovac’s side are fourth in the Bundesliga, and nine points off the summit. Their main issue has been creativity and dynamism in midfield – with Der FCB now the second-lowest scorers in the top six.
The issue has been a mixture of dubious recruitment and long-term injuries. But even with a fit squad, they would surely benefit from the creative hustle-and-bustle Fred offered during his five years at Shakhtar Donetsk.
There’s also no doubt the busy midfielder can handle the pressure-cooker of Bayern. He’s already his pedigree in the latter stages of the Champions League – and a Copa America with Brazil.
The Toffees are a solid outfit under Marco Silva, but they’ve been over-reliant on the duo of Gylfi Sigurdsson and Richarlison as far as creativity is required.
Between them, central midfield options Idrissa Gueye, Morgan Schneiderlin and Andre Gomes have managed zero goals and one assist in 29 games combined.
That underlines the fact there’s a gap for a player with Fred’s combination of marauding runs and slick distribution. But while he’s a decent source of goals and assists, he’s also proven to be a tough tackler who can more-than-handle the physicality of the Premier League.
The Italian giants certainly splashed the cash over the summer, spending upwards of £100m on new arrivals. But they’re still missing a creative fulcrum in the centre of their usual midfield five.
That situation isn’t helped by the fact Daniele De Rossi is on his last legs, whilst young midfielder Lorenzo Pellegrini is also a long-term doubt. He’s currently sidelined with a fourth injury stint of 2018.
With the former surely set to retire when his contract expires in the summer, they’ll certainly need a midfield leader. Having been Shakhtar’s talisman and big game performer, he could be exactly what an ailing Roma side need.
With just three starts in all competitions since late September, the only question now seems to be when and where Fred will go next.
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