This time next week Manchester United will be preparing for a Champions League clash with PSG.
If we are going to be successful, then two key players will need to strike up an instant combination.
Edinson Cavani already fits into the key player category. The veteran striker has the potential to finish United’s season as the club’s top scorer.
If he does, then his link up with Bruno Fernandes will be critical to doing so.
Fernandes is United’s most important attacking player. Even in the season opening defeat to Palace, he managed to create five goalscoring chances.
Fernandes has two assists so far this season, and managed eight for United after signing in January.
Now give him one of Europe’s elite strikers from the past few seasons and the sky is the limit.
Cavani scored 200 goals across seven seasons for PSG, and it’s arguable that Fernandes is as good if not better than many of the creative midfielders to play in those teams.
One criticism of Cavani is that he is a striker who sometimes needs several chances to score. That won’t be a problem with Fernandes in the side.
Even at this early stage of the campaign, Fernandes averages 2.7 key passes completed per game for United. This is despite being taken off at half-time against Tottenham. This ranks him eighth in the Premier League, and it is unlikely he drops outside the top 10 all season.
Cavani will benefit from having Fernandes in the side, and vice versa.
The character of both players will give United a fighting chance. Fernandes combines his skill with the passion and will to win of a Roy Keane, while Cavani is a hard working striker with an infectious attitude. Together they will work to make United better.
In terms of an assist to goalscorer record, the Fernandes to Cavani partnership has the potential to be one of Europe’s most lethal, on paper at least. If they hit it off, it could become a reality.
United now have depth too, with Donny van de Beek able to fill in for Fernandes, and Anthony Martial likely to return from suspension with added focus and eager to fight for his spot.
There should be room for everybody to play their part, and Cavani and Fernandes are two players who United will be counting on, having brought them both into the club this year.
Together they have a chance to strike up an exciting partnership, and defences coming up against United should be worried.
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