Chelsea and Manchester United need to forget about Edinson Cavani

Diego Lugano and Edison Cavani celbrating

Reports continue to suggest that Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani will be heading to England this summer. However it couldn't be further from the truth.

He has scored 13 goals this season for Paris Saint-Germain, his club are set to play Bayer Leverkusen in the last 16 of the Champions League and his country is among the favourites to challenge for this summer’s World Cup.

So it seems obvious that Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani would be unhappy in Paris, which is of course if you believe what you read in the English press.

Every day there seems to be a new story linking Cavani with a move to either Manchester United or Chelsea. The story ran through the January transfer window, and it looks set to continue this summer.

The 27-year-old made the €64.5 million move from Napoli to PSG in the summer, and although he has had to adapt his game to combine with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, he is still managed to find the net 13 times, becoming a fan favourite at the Parc des Princes.

Uruguayan website Ovacion ran a story on Sunday with London based journalist Álvaro Levrero revealing that Cavani would become a Chelsea player before this summer’s World Cup. Perhaps with the story coming from a Uruguayan journalist it should carry a little more weight, however it comes across as another unfounded story from an English based reporter.

It is interesting that in all of the stories that link Cavani with a move away, the fee reported always seems to be around the £50 million mark, which of course would mean that the Parisian club would lose money on any deal.

That reason alone would make it very unlikely. Under the control of owners Qatari Sports Investment, money is no object for PSG, and they are likely to spend more on strengthening their squad rather than losing money and letting their superstars leave.

After joining the club for a Ligue 1 record fee of £53 million pounds, on a five-year contract worth reportedly €10m-a-year, it of course makes perfect sense that they would sell for less than he cost only 12 months ago. Has Cavani’s game deteriorated since joining PSG? Has he become three of four years older?

Does he come across as a disruptive or unhappy player? The answer to all these questions is of course, no. So why does the English press continually link the Uruguayan with a move away from Paris?

It comes across as very lazy reporting. Take a player that was previously linked with a move to England, pick a couple of clubs that could really do with a world-class striker, and pick a random figure out of the sky. Then on a weekly/daily basis link him with a move to said English club. With Cavani playing in Ligue 1, he couldn’t possibly be happy not playing in “The Greatest League in the World”. He must be looking for the first Eurostar out of the French capital.

Any story you can find that mentions how unhappy Cavani is at PSG fails to reveal quotes from the striker, all they ever mention is that he is unhappy playing out wide and playing second fiddle to Zlatan Ibrahimovic.

Anyone who has watched PSG lately will see that although Cavani lines up on the wing, the pattern of play often will lead to Ibrahimovic dropping deep to pick up the ball leaving acres of space for the Uruguayan to come inside and play the Number 9 role.

Most of his 13 goals have come from the central position; it’s not as if Blanc is asking him to hug the touchline for the majority of games. Ibrahimovic has scored 19 league goals this season, can anyone really argue with being behind the Swede in the pecking order?

Ibrahimovic is not getting any older, and the Swedish forward probably has a couple of years left at the top of his game. Slowly but surely Cavani will become the number one striker in Paris, and Laurent Blanc and Cavani will both know this. Blanc himself felt the need to address the issue during the January window.

"You cannot prevent that some club is interested in PSG players, as we are interested in many players," Blanc said. "But today, it is almost impossible to take a major PSG player during the winter market."

Cavani may not be 100% delighted with his role at PSG this season, but he has yet to publically show any discontent in the media or on the pitch.

He is always full of smiles on the pitch and looks quite happy to be playing in the French capital. For any move away from PSG to become a reality, two things would have to happen. Cavani would have to make his position known, announce that he wasn’t happy and force the Parisian club to make a decision.

The other thing that would have to happen is for PSG to receive a bid higher than what they paid for the Uruguayan. £50 million isn’t going to force their hand. He is only one year older, his game has improved in the last 12 months, he is definitely not worth less than what PSG paid Napoli. Offer £65, 70, 80 million and perhaps QSI would think about it.

This is a perfect example of laziness from the British tabloid press. For anyone that follows the French league, nothing in this story makes any sense. Of course don’t let sense get in the way of writing a story. That’s not how this industry works.

images: © Jimmy Baikovicius, © Jimmy Baikovicius

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