Would signing Mason Mount make sense for Manchester United? 

Manchester United have made Mason Mount their number one target for next season. But the question arises will he be a significant upgrade that can transform United’s midfield?

(Football news) Manchester United are going to play in the Champions League after an emphatic 4-1 home win over Chelsea But the headlines even after the result surrounded Mason Mount as David Ornstein stated that the English midfielder is keen on joining the Red Devils. The 24-year-old was unavailable for Chelsea with a pelvis injury but he has told the club hierarchy that he wants to leave the club.

Chelsea would love to give the England midfielder a long-term contract but Mount is thought to be leaning towards a move to Manchester United. If Mount was to join he might enjoy the defensive security and line-breaking passes offered by Casemiro. Playing with the 5 time Champions League winner gives you the certain freedom to play with but is that kind of Manchester United are looking to improve the midfield with. They already have the likes of Bruno and Eriksen who can play as an eight or ten in a three man midfield.

But if you see his playing profile it makes him a natural fit for Ten Hag especially if he was managing Ajax. He used to play a 4-3-3 with midfielders such as Lasse Schone, Frenkie de Jong, Steven Berghuis and Ryan Gravenberch who played as the box-to-box midfielders. This transfer does have potential, but it might not be a seamless adaptation. The most obvious move would be for him to replace Eriksen next to Casemiro or buy a number 8 someone like Adrien Rabiot or Moises Caicedo.

The only way Ten Hag can integrate him into the system is if he pushes Bruno back alongside Casemiro in central midfield which gives the option of Mount pushing forward creating the sort of box midfield that has made Brighton, Arsenal and Manchester City so dangerous in possession this season. Mount moving to United would be a gamble not only for him but for the club also. Gareth Southgate and Thomas Tuchel have enjoyed having Mount as an option because he attacks well and tends to make sure that the offence is run through him.

One aspect of Mount’s game that has often gone unnoticed is when he is seen tasked with winning the ball off the opposition’s deepest midfielder before driving forward and helping counter-attacks. This same tactic was deployed in Chelsea’s 2021 Champions League final win, with Mount and N’Golo Kante pressuring the opposition midfield. But then again the same tactic did not work in the Euro final against Italy a couple of months later, where Mount was overwhelmed by Marco Verratti and Jorginho’s clever movement.

The Englishman could provide aspects to United’s game while improving their defensive intensity when they’re not in possession, something he’s better than Eriksen. On the contrary he is also seven years younger than the Dane and can provide similar attacking output and his work rate is higher than Eriksen. But the main question is whether Mount is an upgrade over the Dane and looking at this season, Eriksen has been a lynchpin in United’s good attacking play.

Also read: Manchester United thrash Chelsea and qualify for Champions League


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