Home » Why Manchester United are right to move for Christian Eriksen

Why Manchester United are right to move for Christian Eriksen

by David O'Neill

Manchester United have offered a contract to Christian Eriksen, according to Tier one journalist David Ornstein, but is the former Ajax player right for Manchester United?

The midfield maestro will have plenty of offers following his remarkable return to competitive football over the last six months, which have seen him become a talisman at Brentford whilst seamlessly slotting back in to an in-form Denmark side.

But while The Athletic’s Carl Anka sees Eriksen as a “floor-raising” player capable of ‘making flawed teams better and pushing good teams towards greatness,’ he somewhat disparagingly suggests that the potential signing is the ‘kind of business we’ve come to expect’ in the post-Ferguson era.

The feeling that Eriksen could be another case of “right player, wrong time” is not an isolated one, with many believing that attacking midfield is an area of relative strength at Old Trafford.

However with Juan Mata and Jesse Lingard both departing on free transfers, there is certainly room in the side for a player of Eriksen’s quality. While those two did not hold down regular starting spots in the season gone by, the creativity and determination of the Danish star would likely see him far more involved.

Added to that, both Ralf Rangnick and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer often deployed Paul Pogba in forward roles during their spells at the club. Eriksen therefore, not only replaces Mata and Lingard, but also Pogba-the-attacker.

With Manchester United often incredibly reliant on Bruno Fernandes for his progressive passing, adding another creator in the mould of Eriksen would not only ease that burden, but bring an air of unpredictability to the attack.

Fernandes has often cut a frustrated figure in the side, with his outbursts to teammates and referees seemingly increasing when marked out of matches by opponents all too familiar with the Portuguese’s ability to turn a game.

If Erik ten Hag can convince Eriksen to spurn Spurs and co, he will have gained a player ‘able to generate goalscoring opportunities for his teammates while still valuing possession’ according to Anka.

That more considered style would make for an ideal counterpoint to the death-or-glory approach of Bruno, and it is easy to imagine the two working well in tandem.

Indeed, Anka sees the left of a 4-2-3-1 as a position from which Eriksen could operate, although the free agent has achieved top-class performances playing off the right for Spurs or even in the heart of midfield at Brentford.

That sort of versatility could see the experienced international become a key player for ten Hag, who will surely need some players capable of hitting the ground running if he is to have the time necessary to develop the rest.

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