Man Utd use Barcelona star Lionel Messi to make transfer decision on forward

Manchester United have factored Barcelona star Lionel Messi into their decision to sign Edinson Cavani, reports say. Cavani is poised to complete his move to Old Trafford imminently, having left Paris Saint-Germain at the end of last season. And the Red Devils are hoping that, at the age of 33, he has much to offer at the highest level.

Manchester United are signing Cavani to act as foil for Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood this season.

The Paris Saint-Germain legend has held talks about moving to Old Trafford in the past, most notably during Louis van Gaal’s spell at the helm, but is now poised to complete a blockbuster move to the Premier League.

Cavani was a huge hit during his seven years at PSG, scoring 200 goals from 301 appearances and winning silverware galore along the way.

Some United fans are sceptical, however. They fear another Radamel Falcao or Bastian Schweinsteiger, top players who arrived with their best years in the past, rather than ahead.

Yet the Evening Standard say United have factored Barcelona star Messi into their decision to swoop for the Uruguay international.

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Messi, at the same age of Cavani at 33, is still shining for Barcelona and found the net 25 times from 33 La Liga matches last term – despite the club struggling under both Ernesto Valverde and Quique Setien.

And that’s why United believe Cavani still has much to offer, thinking he can go on to help the club improve under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Solskjaer has a young squad and the 33-year-old would offer valuable experience, especially to young trio Martial, Greenwood and Marcus Rashford.

United’s last free agent signing was Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who touched down at Old Trafford during the summer transfer window of 2016.

And if Cavani can match the exploits of the Sweden international then he’d be worth the gamble, with Ibrahimovic scoring 28 goals during his only full season at the Theatre of Dreams.

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Meanwhile, speaking ahead of United’s Premier League clash with Tottenham on Sunday afternoon, Solskjaer defended the club’s transfer business.

Donny van de Beek remains their only confirmed signing and their pursuit of Jadon Sancho, despite being well-documented, is yet to pay off.

And Solskjaer said: “When I came in and was given the job, I gave my view on what the team should look like and how to get there.

“I feel when we had these conversations, the club understood my view.

“In all honesty, results are always the key here. But the club also see what we are doing with the club, and what we want to do with the club.

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“I’m not looking at other clubs in that way — of course I look at them in terms of keeping up with what’s going on — but other clubs have a way of running, we have our way of running our club.

“And of course, I’m very happy working with the players I’ve got.

“But also, the part of the job is to improve the squad all the time, and so far I’ve been backed. We are working hard to be competitive again, amongst the best.

“I think football now is different from what it was six or eight months ago, and these times are very unique.

“To get deals done you need to monitor a player for a long, long while, and monitor your target, and I feel the process there has been working well.”

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