In the words of UFC octagon announcer Bruce Buffer, “IT’S TIME!!!”
The January transfer window has finally opened its doors, meaning Manchester United may be tempted to dip into the market to strengthen their squad before the end of the season.
Ever since he first arrived at Madrid from Malaga back in 2013, Isco, 28, has provided 51 goals and 55 assists in 318 appearances across all competitions, via Transfermarkt.
However, it seems his time at the Bernabeu is finally coming to an end as it appears he is deemed surplus to requirements after falling down the pecking order under Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane, having made just three starts thus far this season.
Bruno Fernandes has cemented his place on the world stage as he is unequivocally the biggest creative asset at the club right now – since his arrival at Old Trafford this time last year, the former Sporting Lisbon playmaker has scored 26 goals and supplied 17 assists in 45 appearances, which is a pretty remarkable record.
But the same can’t be said for Daniel James, Juan Mata or indeed Donny van de Beek, who has arguably struggled to hit the ground running after Ed Woodward signed the 23-year-old from Ajax for £35m on a five-year deal last summer.
Mata has been a loyal servant of the club and has produced some memorable moments over the years since joining the club six years ago, including his famous bicycle kick away at Anfield.
While Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does have several options to provide cover and competition for the advanced player position – namely Fernandes, Mata and Van de Beek – there isn’t a lot of depth in this area.
In fact, we’d even go so far as to say that the former Spanish international would be a significant upgrade on most of the midfield options that are currently available, barring Fernandes.
Recently described as a “fantastic” beast by his former Madrid and now-Everton boss Carlo Ancelotti, the 28-year-old played four games in the Champions League last season and scored one goal, whilst he averaged two shots, 1.5 tackles and 1.8 dribbles per game, via WhoScored.
By comparison, Mata could only muster 1.4 dribbles on average per game in the Europa League last season, as per WhoScored.
Ed Woodward simply can’t afford to ignore a player such as Isco, let alone let him slip through his fingers, especially when you consider the fact that his market value is estimated at a mere £18m, via Transfermarkt. However, it seems his former club Malaga are in the driving seat, so the board may have a bidding war on their hands should the Spaniard pique their interest.