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Vasco de Gama defender on his way to Old Trafford?
Manchester United are reportedly looking at Vasco da Gama defender Dede as they seek to improve their back line.
Long time stalwarts Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand have seen the years catch up with them, and the England international in particular suffers from recurring niggly injuries.
Vidic himself was ruled out long term with a knee injury in early December and will miss the rest of the season.
The replacements were supposed to already be bought: Chris Smalling and Phil Jones have both shown they have the talent to make it to the top, but positional uncertainty remains for each.
Jones’ worst performances for Manchester United have come at centre back, with the 3-0 loss to Newcastle United a particular low, and he appears destined to become a midfield enforcer in the long term if he can improve his distribution.
Smalling is more likely to stick at centre back, having played well alongside Jonny Evans against Arsenal at the weekend, though he has also played admirably at right full back.
23 year-old Dede is a central defender by trade, but has been partially credited with the revival of the sweeper position thanks to his ball carrying ability from the back and distribution.
In his home country of Brazil, he has earned the moniker of Dedeckenbauer – in homage to legendary Germany captain Franz Beckenbauer of course – and his average of a goal every five games is mightily impressive.
Dede won the best right centre back in Brazil in 2010, and the best central defender of the Campeonato Carioca in 2011. He also earned his first two Brazil caps late last year, and appears to be on the rise.
Could he be the answer for Manchester United alongside the more orthodox Jonny Evans or Chris Smalling?