Englishman abroad could be the key to United signing William Carvalho

Sporting Lisbon

Manchester United may get some help signing William Carvalho by the presence of a young man who could take his place.

Given the amount of times Manchester United have reportedly scouted Sporting Lisbon midfielder William Carvalho – 12 and counting – it would be a huge surprise if David Moyes does not make a bid for the 21-year-old defensive midfielder at the end of the current campaign.

William is an outstanding footballer who is destined to play for one of the very best sides in Europe. And while Portuguese sides have shown they are not averse to selling their best talent if the price is right, United are far more likely to get their man if his current club have a replacement in the wings.

Step forward Eric Dier – a Cheltenham born defender-cum-midfielder who has been with Sporting since the age of 10; signing professional terms once he turned 16.

Everton fans may be familiar with Dier after he spent a loan spell at Goodison Park, but he is now beginning to make waves in Portugal; and while he has played most of his matches as a centre-back, he recently stepped into the void filled by the absence of William.

While the player still has much to learn, it would be an interesting twist in a sport full of them if the presence of an Englishman abroad ultimately allows a club from his homeland to seal a deal for a much-needed component.

That Moyes has already seen Dier up close during his loan spell at the Toffees only makes the story that bit more interesting.

images: © danheap77

Register for MANCHESTER UNITED team updates

Register for HITC Sport - Daily Dispatch