News emerged today that David Moyes is allegedly tracking two Barcelona midfielders, having seemingly not learn a thing from last summer’s double fiasco when his pursuit of Thiago Alcantara and Cesc Fabregas ended with the former choosing Bayern Munich over United, while the latter decided to stay put in Catalonia.
The United manager, however, has his sight set on another pair of Barcelona midfielders this time, with Alex Song and Cristian Tello emerging as the latest names linked with the job nobody seems to want: being a midfielder for Manchester United.
With United no longer in the FA Cup and thus not playing until Saturday, it was perhaps inevitable that the media would turn their attention to off-pitch matters, particularly as Wayne Rooney looks poised to put pen to paper on a staggering new deal, while transfer rumours involving United are not going to go away until September.
The rumour, first reported by online sources, suggests that Moyes hopes to lure Tello and Song to Old Trafford by promising them the regular football they’ve been missing out at the Camp Nou, where Andres Iniesta, Sergio Busquets, Xavi and Cesc Fabregas are way ahead of them in the pecking order.
Song followed Thierry Henry and Cesc Fabregas from Arsenal to Barcelona when he left the Emirates in August 2012, but he’s failed to make much of an impact in Spain and has failed to dislodge Sergio Busquets from the starting XI, while the Cameroonian performances as stand-in centre-back haven’t convinced either.
Song, who can operate in front of the back four or further up the pitch and knows the Premier League very well, has made just eight league starts this season but things have gone even worse for Tello, who has started just two of Barca’s games in La Liga this campaign, with the likes of Lionel Messi, Neymar and Alexis Sanchez limiting his opportunities.
Tello, a product of Barca academy, last summer signed a long-term contract but with his direct rivals for a starting spot all but guaranteed a place in the first XI, the 22-year-old could be tempted to leave the Camp Nou behind.
Even admitting both players wanted to leave Barcelona this summer, quite why they would join a side likely to be out of any European competition next season remains to be seen, not to mention that were Song and Tello to become available they could expect to attract more than a couple of suitors.
Furthermore, in recent weeks Moyes has stated that United won’t settle for players who are not of the level the club deems necessary to return to a competitive level and, fine players though they might be, neither Tello nor Song are world class players, but coherence remains a luxury many in the United hierarchy aren’t willing to indulge in.