This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
According to the Mirror, West Bromwich Albion’s loan star Matheus Pereira is being watched by Premier League heavyweights Manchester United, which may well scupper manager Slaven Bilic’s imminent plans.
It is believed that United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is preparing a triple swoop in January of Jadon Sancho, Erling Haaland, and the Baggies’ instrumental number ten.
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Albion have an option to sign the Brazilian playmaker for £8.25m in January, so there’s a good chance they will make that move permanent given his start to the season – three goals and six assists in 14 appearances, via WhoScored.
But there may be the temptation to instantly cash in on the 23-year-old, who has been likened to Mohamed Salah in the past, as per the official Bundesliga website, where they have highlighted their similarities – strong in possession, full of pace, excellent dribbling and the orchestrator of intricate interplay.
The report suggests that Solskjaer’s scouts have been impressed by his transition into English football, although it remains to be seen how accurate this is.
The only way United will be able to get their hands on him in January is if the Baggies hierarchy pulls the trigger on that permanent move and then ratifies the sale after that.
January has the potential to be season-defining for West Brom.
They currently occupy top spot in the Championship, and it seems likely that they will remain in the promotion hunt over the next two months as they have only lost one match this campaign.
But Bilic will surely be looking to add to his squad in the winter window to bolster those chances with Pereira’s permanent move seeming a likely scenario.
And with uncertainty over whether or not West Ham will recall Grady Diangana – Manuel Pellegrini did say that he’s best served to stay in the west Midlands, but that was before Manuel Lanzini went down injured – so keeping hold of Pereira will be crucial to their season prospects.
The Baggies can’t risk splitting their squad up as it is this current set up which has put them on the path to achieving automatic promotion, something that they are well on track to earn given that if they keep this up, they’ll surpass 92 points which has been enough in four of the last five seasons.
Although, the lure of making an instant profit may be too much for the club to keep hold of Pereira.