It seems a summer transfer window is no longer complete without Uruguayan striker Edinson Cavani being constantly linked with a big money move to the Premier League, and Manchester United and Arsenal have been just two names in the mix in recent times. Cavani’s rise as one for the ‘football hipsters’ after a decent spell with Napoli ultimately led to a blockbuster deal with Paris Saint-Germain in July 2013.
Upon his arrival, PSG’s Qatari owners earmarked his signing as a new dawn for the club, describing him as “best players in the world“. Now, Cavani has everything it takes to be a world class player in the eyes of many. He’s the strong, stylish, suave looking player who finished top scorer in Serie A during 2012-2013. Known as El Matador in his homeland, he has been part of the Uruguay squads that finished fourth in the 2010 World Cup and won the Copa America in 2011.
It has been since his £55m transfer though, that El Matador has lost his fight. Yes you can point to his ever growing trophy collection in Paris, but it his performances in the more important games that are far more telling. Cavani has struggled to ever impose himself as the main man at the Parc des Princes, thanks to one particular Swede, Zlatan. However, as PSG look to progress in the Champions League, the Uruguayan seems to have been exposed.
Scoring goals in the French league should be relatively straight forward for any ‘world class striker’ claimant. What you pay £55m for is big performances toward the latter stages of Europe’s elite competition, and that is simply what PSG haven’t received.
Cavani needs to be more clinical in the big games. English fans are harsh, he only has to ask his colleague Mr. Ibrahimovic. Any deal bringing Cavani to these shores would more than likely be proceeded by his montage of misses against Chelsea and England within the last year – nobody remembers the goals against St Etienne, Bastia or Rennes – and at £55m they shouldn’t have to.
As of summer 2015, Cavani’s transfer from Napoli to the French capital remains in the top 10 most expensive deals of all time. 34 goals in 65 appearances is a respectable tally, no doubt, but taking both the transfer fee and the quality of the opposition into account, has he really been worth it?
It is hard to imagine Cavani representing an upgrade for any of the Premier League’s elite. Perhaps he is a more stylish name than Olivier Giroud or Danny Welbeck, but it is doubtful he would be any more effective in North London. Were he to enter the Theatre of Dreams, his name would create quite the buzz of initial excitement – but Radamel Falcao arrived to a massive fanfare…
Premier League clubs should give Cavani a wide berth. The amount of stylish strikers playing on the continent who’ve failed miserably in England need grow no more.