Man Utd to swoop for Cheick Tiote in the summer
Manchester United got their marquee signing in Juan Mata, but with the central midfield area still very weak, reports suggest David Moyes will swoop for tough-tacklng Newcastle player Cheick Tiote in the summer.
Ivorian Tiote is exactly the type of player that United have been missing in recent years, as they have yet to replace former midfield general Roy Keane.
Presently, the reigning league champions’ only consistent midfield performer seems to be Michael Carrick. With others such as Marouane Fellaini, Tom Cleverley and Ryan Giggs either injured, simply not good enough or way past their peak – not necessarily respectively…
Darren Fletcher’s return is certainly a boost and Phil Jones has been utilised in the middle of the park, but new signing Mata is currently the club’s top tackler per game, which says a lot.
Tiote seems to fit the mark on that one, as stats prove that he averages more tackles per game at Newcastle than any other Man Utd player. However, another problem for them is the lack of goals and assists from central midfield, so it seems a box-to-box player will also be on Moyes’ wish list.
Tabloids report that the Red Devils had enquired about Tiote during the January transfer window, but that was never going to happen after the departure of Yohan Cabaye to PSG.
Newcastle are in an almost certain position for a top-10 finish with odds of 1/25, being 12 points ahead of 11th-placed Stoke City, but losing two key centre midfielders would’ve been too much for Newcastle.
However, Alan Pardew could be tempted to offload Tiote in the summer when he has more time to rebuild. With Man Utd’s odds at 13/5 for a top-four finish, it seems Moyes will need to delve deep in the transfer market for players with Premier League experience rather than hope for a world-class signing, as it is unlikely he’ll be able to attract as many big-names.
There has also been recent speculation that claims Moyes is in the market for Sporting Lisbon’s powerhouse William Carvalho. The 21-year-old, however, has a release clause of around £37.5m so it is likely that Tiote will be the cheaper and safer option.
Barcelona and Real Madrid are rumoured to also be in the hunt for the Portugal international.