Manchester United are no stranger to a marquee deal and might have found one to cement success for years to come in Atletico Madrid’s Joao Felix.
Felix has not quite blossomed as hoped in the Spanish capital, largely due to the polarity in style between his own game and head coach Diego Simeone’s impetus on structured and resolute defensive play.
And now, after signing for £113m in 2019 from SL Benfica, might be on the move once again, with Marca reporting that Felix has come to a decision on his future, and wishes to ply his trade elsewhere.
And with Diario AS reporting that conflicts have reached boiling point, a departure from the club could materialise as swiftly as January.
Were United to succeed in their pursuit, the entire offensive department would prosper as a result, although the impact it would have on the likes of Marcus Rashford would be immense.
With Rashford rekindling his best form after a drab year last season, he is finding the back of the net both for club and country, combining the return of his clinical prowess with a direct and energetic presence that leaves defenders scrambling in his wake.
And with a creative mind slotted into the ranks, a new dawn might just be accentuated, with Erik ten Hag previously succeeding in nurturing the ability of Dusan Tadic at Ajax, a similar player.
Managing just 33 goals and 18 assists in 129 appearances for Madrid, Felix would certainly wish for a team with more attacking intent, indeed somewhat prohibited by Simeone’s style.
As per FBref, Felix ranks within the top 12% for assists, 11% for progressive passes and 14% for dribbles completed, illuminating his creative presence that could power United’s batteries to new levels.
With his influence, Rashford would flourish, offering a platform to create direct frontal attacks and offered space by a forward who strives to provide a selfless contribution to his team.
Hailed an “outstanding talent” by Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, Felix would be a stunning addition to the Red Devil’s plans, perhaps the difference between struggling for a place in the top-four and challenging for the title.
The “sensation” – in the words of writer Sacha Pisani – would be a sterling addition, and although a lucrative fee would be required, United have shown time and time again that they are unflinching when spending on those deemed capable of lifting them to the next level.
This time, it might just work out.