Former player can make or break United's pursuit of Argentinian star

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Former Manchester United defender Laurent Blanc could aid Manchester United’s pursuit of Erik Lamela.

Blanc had a very brief spell at Old Trafford under Sir Alex Ferguson and he could now do his former club a massive favour if he becomes the new manager of Roma.

Erik Lamela is a 21-year-old Argentinian striker and winger who United have been looking at over the last few months who could turn out to be one of the most competitive signings of the summer.

Lamela has indicated that he is looking to extend his Roma contract past its current expiration date in 2016 but football is an industry where if a big club comes in with a good offer, players sit up and take notice.

Lamela had a superb record for Roma last season with 15 goals and five assists which makes him worthwhile in terms of the upheaval involved for United in trying to sign him.

If Blanc is confirmed as the new Roma boss, United need to prey on his former relationship with the club before he can settle down and forge a strong working relationship with the Argentinian.

If Roma announce they are listening to offers then it’s going to get very competitive for his transfer very quickly, which makes it all the more important for United to try and utilise any advantage they can get hold of.

The money isn’t the problem because United could pay the same sort of fee and wage deal as any of the other top clubs after Lamela, it’s all about convincing him that Old Trafford is the right place to go.

Blanc played for United towards the later stage of his career and Ferguson gave him a chance to play on the biggest stage when other clubs weren’t interested in taking a punt on him when he was past his peak.

The problem for United is that Fergie has now retired and moved upstairs and David Moyes has no obvious relationship or connection to the Frenchman which makes it ever so slightly harder for United.

However, the fact Fergie isn’t going away altogether is significant because he can do Moyes favours like this, working unofficially to try and get United an edge in this sort of deal.

While he’s not the manager any more and he’s not coaching, he could find it very difficult to resist getting involved to a minor extent because he remains so close to the football club.

Lamela is a player who United would definitely benefit from. He’s only going to improve as a versatile front man as he heads towards his mid-20s and if United can help him achieve that development, it will be worth all the hassle.

Do you think Blanc will aid United’s bid or hinder it?

image: © Damien Cansse

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