Manchester United have been offered Tottenham midfielder Christian Eriksen, according to reports in the English media. Spurs fear losing the Dane on a free transfer next summer and are encouraging the Red Devils to take him off their hands.
So, what would the 27-year-old add to this United side? The short answer is Creativity and lots of it if we delve into the numbers.
If we compare Eriksen’s stats to Paul Pogba‘s, we see two figures that stand out from the rest. On average the Tottenham averages 0.67 key passes per game, according to Wyscout, which is higher than Paul Pogba (0.54) and over double the average of United’s other midfielders last season.
The Danish international’s assist record is also very impressive. The 27-year-old averages 0.31 assists per 90 minutes compared to Pogba’s 0.21.
Considering that United drew six games at home last season, and scored 33 goals in those 19 matches, Eriksen would provide an ideal creative outlet to unlock those stubborn defences.
The playmaker wouldn’t have to adapt much to manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s system either with the 4-2-3-1 formation ideally suited for the Dane to play in the hole behind the main striker.
He is very much a player you have to build the team around rather than him being part of the cog in the wheel. He’s a “luxury” player but a very good one.
Under manager Mauricio Pochettino at Tottenham, Eriksen is also not afraid to put in the dirty work either, averaging 3.06 interceptions per game. It must be said, though, that he doesn’t generally put his foot in to make a tackle.
If he does arrive at Old Trafford, it will be interesting to see how he interacts with Pogba if the Frenchman does stay at the club beyond the summer.
Having two creative forces on the pitch, rather than one, can only be a good thing, but chemistry will be important. Pogba likes playing in the left channel, while Eriksen roams right across the width of the pitch.
It could lead to the two players getting in each other’s way or the two could build a relationship on the field, with quick one-twos, with Eriksen supplying the ammunition for Pogba to make more forward runs.
With Eriksen in the side, there is no doubt that United would improve as an attacking unit, and fans will be greatly anticipating developments over this potentially game-changing summer transfer.