The Red Devils are keen on securing the services of the highly rated attacking midfielder
Manchester United are hot on the heels of Marseille midfielder Florian Thauvin if latest reports are to be believed. The reigning champions though are set to be rivalled by Chelsea in the race for the player and according to the French media, scouting teams of both teams were in attendance to get a first hand view of the player in Marseille’s defeat to Borussia Dortmund in midweek. Thauvin first broke onto the scene at Grenoble and signed his first professional contract with Bastia at the age of 18. After impressing suitors with some promising displays for the Les Bleus, the midfielder joined Lille in January, only to be loaned back to Bastia till the end of the season. A subsequent series of events saw the youngster go on strike at LOSC Lille over the summer, to finally secure a move to the Velodrome in a deal well over 12 Million Euros.
The midfielder has also said to have attracted from the likes of Newcastle and Everton but a switch to either St James’ Park or Goodison seems highly unlikely given the interest from the bigger clubs. Thauvin has largely been impressive for the Les Phocéens this season, scoring six times in 13 appearances so far this campaign.
Speaking ahead of the Champions League meeting between the two teams back in November, Arsene Wenger confirmed that the Gunners were interested in signing the player back in January itself before Lille stepped in to secure his signature –
“It was a surprise transfer for me. We were following him and we were interested in him before he joined Lille.
“For me, he is one of the big prospects of French football. He will go higher. He is only 20. His progress now will not depend on his talent but on his mentality.
“We saw in the summer that he showed a great mental strength, but you can also question his mentality for the way he behaved towards Lille.
“Only the future will tell us.”
THT Verdict – Florian Thauvin is one of the brightest talents going around at the moment, but is he the need of the hour at either Old Trafford or Stamford Bridge? Not quite sure about that. The youngster’s stand out attributes are his dribbling and his powerful shot from distance. On the flipside, his passing and ability to keep possession are areas which still need polishing. Jose Mourinho has a plethora of players who are similar to Thauvin, both positionally and in their style of play which makes any potential move for him a nonsensical expenditure of a considerable amount of money.
On the other hand, David Moyes is on the lookout of a midfielder who can partner Carrick at the heart of United’s midfield and going by his key attributes, Thauvin certainly doesn’t seem to fit into the required category of players.
But as Arsene Wenger said – We shall see.