STATS: Should Manchester United have pushed harder for Edinson Cavani?

Manchester United opted to bring in Radamel Falcao over the summer, but should they have pushed harder for Paris St Germain striker Edinson Cavani?

Manchester United prioritised the capture of marquee signings over the summer, with Louis van Gaal seeking to put down an early transfer marker upon inheriting the managerial reins at Old Trafford.

He was able to lure Angel di Maria from Real Madrid for a British record fee, with the Red Devils’ lack of Champions League football doing little damage to their appeal when pursuing big names.

Attention then quickly turned to the capture of an established striker, one proven at the very highest level.

Numerous names were offered as possible targets, but it was to take until deadline day for a high-profile deal to be pushed through.

Radamel Falcao was the man welcomed to the Premier League, with the Colombia international secured on the back of his prolific goalscoring exploits at Porto, Atletico Madrid and Monaco.

United were careful not to commit too much to a man coming off the back of a serious knee injury, though, with a season-long loan agreement bringing him to England.

It appears as though Van Gaal had every right to be cautious, with Falcao having struggled for fitness and game time during his early months at Old Trafford.

Could it be argued that they should never have signed him and that the time and money invested in the South American could have been better used elsewhere?

Edinson Cavani has long been linked with a move to Old Trafford, and has appeared to open the transfer door on occasions.

His efforts in the Champions League alone this season suggest that he would have been preferable to Falcao and would have been a target that could have been secured on a long-term contract with little risk involved.

  TeamGoalsTotal Scoring AttOntarget Scoring AttBig Chance MissedTouchesAppearancesMins Played
Edinson Cavani Paris SG 5 23 8 3 234 6 540
  TeamGoalsTotal Scoring AttOntarget Scoring AttBig Chance MissedTouchesAppearancesMins Played
Falcao Man Utd 1 13 6 4 143 7 283

There is still time for Falcao to prove himself, with the 2014/15 campaign yet to reach the halfway stage.

He will have to go some from here, though, if he is to produce his best and convince United that he is worthy of a permanent switch next summer.

If he fails to do so, Van Gaal will look to use the funds saved elsewhere and it may be that Cavani comes back onto the transfer radar of a side pushing hard to ensure that they are back in Europe’s premier club competition next term.

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