Andreas Pereira has always been a conundrum at Manchester United. He is obviously a talented footballer with an eye for the spectacular, as many fans will vouch for with his back catalog of impressive pre-season strikes, but his poor decision-making and inability to regularly impact games have meant he’s often found himself shipped out on loan.
Though Ole Gunnar Solskjaer attempted to get a tune out of him before the arrival of Bruno Fernandes, Pereira never really threatened to cement himself as a regular in United’s first team. He was one of the infamous recipients of an extended contract under Ed Woodward which anchored him to Old Trafford, and prospective buyers have been few and far between in recent years.
However, that all looks set to change. Pereira has had a number of loan spells in the past, at Valencia and Lazio to name just two, and said spells away from Old Trafford have done little to persuade clubs to take a punt on the Brazilian. But his latest temporary move from him-a season-long loan with Flamengo-looks to have caught the attention of Premier League newcomers Fulham.
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According to UOL Sport, Fulham have made a €10million (£8.6m) bid with €3m (£2.5m) in add-ons that United have accepted, with Pereira now left to decide whether he wants to move away. It seems Marco Silva was impressed by the Brazillian’s stint in his homeland as a deep-lying playmaker and wants him to bring him to Craven Cottage.
This isn’t the first time Fulham are embarking on a vital summer as they look to strengthen their squad in a bid to ensure Premier League survival on their return to the top flight. The Cottagers recently secured their third promotion to the Premier League in the past five seasons, though their business in the summer market on the previous two occasions left a lot to be desired.
Their scattergun approach to bolstering their ranks has been naive at best. The likes of Andre-Frank Zambo Anguissa and Aleksandar Mitrovic have come to be hits – though the latter has never been able to carry his exceptional Championship form into the Premier League – but most of their summer signings following promotion to the top flight have failed to live up to expectations.
After two ill-fated attempts to try and stay in the Premier League, Fulham looked to have learned their lesson and were linked with players like Joao Palhinha, Morgan Gibbs-White and Neco Williams, and Pereira isn’t necessarily going to turn out to be a bad signing. But if this is just another example of a wild Fulham spending spree which fails to deliver the goods, then at least United will have benefited.
A move to Fulham probably makes sense for both Pereira and United, and the reported fee involved is likely much higher than United would have received had they sold him prior to his loan move to Flamengo last year. However, he may still harbor genuine hopes of making it at Old Trafford and Erik ten Hag is clearly eager to afford everyone an opportunity to impress.