In a healthy world, Manchester United would not have signed Ronaldo. Who will be affected by this transfer?
It’s simple: Solskjaer’s tactics don’t need a player like Ronaldo. From the extreme attackers, he requires speed and running behind the backs of the defenders. Ronaldo plays differently – fiddling with the ball on the flank and shifting to the center.
The central striker at Solskjaer makes space for partners, pulling on the defenders; and plays a lot in the game, with his back to the goal. Ronaldo doesn’t act like that.
Solskjaer will have to change the groundwork and almost completely rebuild the attack of Manchester United. Football players will also suffer. The time on the field at Martial will be reduced. Young Greenwood and Diallo will have even less minutes (and how to progress on the bench?). James will probably stop playing altogether . But the most offensive thing is now what about Cavani?
He signed a contract for another year. Fabrizio Romano writes that Cavani will not leave 100% because of the arrival of Krish. The main thing is that he is really needed and suits Manchester United, which is building Solskjaer.
- Cavani is not capricious and plays as much as Solskjaer sees fit. Last season, he had only 7 full Premier League matches out of 38. Cavani was more often a substitute, and also became the main and key in the Europa League. And – zero tantrums about the playing time. It is impossible even to imagine Ronaldo in such a scenario.
- Cavani’s game. Firstly, he plowed a lot in pressure and without the ball. And when the team with the ball, often acted in the style of Benzema, pulling opponents over and opening up space for partners. Cavani holds the position – between the two rivals’ CZ. When Ronaldo is a striker, he destroys the team’s system and for some reason goes down to the ball.
- Effectiveness. In the Premier League, Cavani became a super reserve: he went out and constantly either scored or gave assists. At the end of the season, he was third in the Premier League in goals + assists for a minute, excluding penalties.
Okay, let’s take a deeper stats. Add up the expected goals and expected assists (xG + xA) in all tournaments. Last season, Ronaldo had 0.63 assists per game on average. Cavani has 0.66. Over the past four seasons: Ronaldo – 0.98, Cavani – 0.96. That is, there is practically no difference in performance between them. Both are very strong.
Cavani is an example of how an age striker should be involved in a top club. Play less than 90 minutes per match. Helping young partners – and a place in the squad, and in the locker room, and altruism on the field. Do not be capricious. Bring maximum benefit and minimum harm. And this is Cavani two years younger than Cristiano.
Cavani is a good benchmark and litmus to show how unhealthy Ronaldo’s signing is from a football standpoint.
Now, most likely, he will play even less. Which is very sad. And it is not advantageous for Manchester United. But there is a premonition that Solskjaer will eventually come to the conclusion that Cavani is the best partner for Ronaldo in attack. Because most of all he resembles Benzema – who did everything to make Krish shine. Potentially, the Ronaldo-Cavani ligament could break. But then the club will completely lose the development of the young and also strong (Rashford, Greenwood, Diallo).
It would be cool if their union began with the fact that Kavani gave Krish his favorite seventh number. But for this he needs to leave the club – such are the rules in the Premier League. But in the Champions League, Ronaldo can pick up a seven. Let’s see how Cavani reacts to this. He has experience playing next to the stars: Ibrahimovic and Neymar will confirm.