Edinson Cavani’s future remains unresolved heading into the final two months of the season.
At the start of 2021 it seemed like a no-brainer to renew his deal, but United were in no rush.
This may have been a sensible approach, considering Cavani’s injury troubles since.
Amid ongoing links to Boca Juniors [ESPN], Cavani needs to be persuaded he has a bright future at United if he does commit himself for one more year.
The Mail report Cavani is concerned that United will sign another striker anyway.
The Uruguayan does not want to be used as a back-up, similarly to the way Odion Ighalo became an afterthought after his arrival last October.
Cavani is too good to be ostracised in the same way – Ighalo did not play a single Premier League minute – but he is prideful and does not want to be a reserve.
At the age of 34, you can understand Cavani’s stance here. He only has very limited time left playing at the top level, not everybody can continue like Zlatan Ibrahimovic until 39.
He would not want to waste a year, especially when part of him may yearn for a return to South America.
So what should United do?
Part of the problem is the timing. Cavani will want a commitment from United, probably before the club even move for a striker.
While United would like to have Cavani as an insurance, just in case a striker move falls through.
And with a strong end to the season, Cavani could become a very valuable asset – or turn into a rapidly depreciating one if he suffers another injury.
United are being cautious, as is Cavani, but sooner or later one side will have to commit, or walk away.
Only United know how determined the club is to sign a striker, and how many names are on the list.
If John Murtough and co are confident they will land one of their top targets, then Cavani becomes a luxury back-up who can either stay or go, depending on what he wants.
In the case that United’s chiefs are worried they will not land the targets they want, then getting Cavani signed up becomes more important.
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