Manchester United to compete with Gunners for Brazil midfielder.
Manchester United manager David Moyes could look to solve his midfield problems with a bid for Bayern Munich’s Luiz Gustavo, it has emerged.
The 26-year-old has attracted strong interest from Arsenal this summer, with recent reports suggesting a deal could be close to bring the midfielder to the Emirates Stadium.
At around £15million, Gustavo is seen as something of a bargain, as he is unfortunate not to feature more regularly for the German giants due to the fierce competition for places in their star-studded squad. His availability is said to have alerted clubs from all over Europe, though Arsenal are keen to get a deal wrapped up after a quiet summer so far.
Arsene Wenger was widely tipped to spend big, and has made ambitious bids for the likes of Marouane Fellaini, Gonzalo Higuain and Luis Suarez, though without success so far. Still, the Frenchman has hinted that he could make some moves late on in this transfer window, and Gustavo would be a useful addition to a side that is somewhat lacking in natural defensive midfielders.
Gustavo, who has ten caps for Brazil, would provide a bit more steel to the Gunners’ midfield than the likes of Mikel Arteta and Aaron Ramsey, who both found themselves in this rather unfamiliar role throughout the 2012/13 season after the sale of Alex Song to Barcelona.
However, United have also been in the hunt for a new midfielder, and themselves have failed in bids for the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Thiago Alcantara and Kevin Strootman, with the latter two joining other teams, and the former committing his future to current club Barcelona.
New United boss Moyes is keen to strengthen a midfield that will now be without the retired Paul Scholes, and that is also lacking a more defensive-minded alternative to the likes of Michael Carrick, Tom Cleverley and the out-of-favour Anderson.
Gustavo would be an ideal addition, and would add to United’s squad of experienced and proven winners, having played his part in Bayern’s incredible treble-winning season last year. He is also a far cheaper option than in-demand Everton star Fellaini, who will now command an asking price of close to £30million after the release clause in his contract expired at the start of August. Although Moyes has been keen to be reunited with his former player, it seems increasingly likely that the Belgian will remain at Goodison Park for at least one more season.
It would be a big boost for Moyes and United to beat rivals Arsenal to the signing of a key player, and they will hope to persuade Gustavo that a move to Old Trafford is more likely to end in success and silverware than a switch to the Emirates Stadium.