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Man United enter the race for 17-year-old French wonderkid – Could he be Matic’s successor?

Eduardo Camavinga (Getty Images)
Eduardo Camavinga celebrates after scoring (Getty Images)

Why Manchester United should beat Real Madrid to the signing of Eduardo Camavinga

According to a report from the Metro, Manchester United have entered the race to sign Rennes wonderkid Eduardo Camavinga in the summer transfer window.

The 17-year-old Camavinga started out at the Drapeau-Fougeres academy, before making the switch to Rennes in 2013. The midfielder has risen rapidly through the ranks, making his first-team debut towards the end of the last season, aged just 16.

Camavinga has since kicked on to become a pivotal member of the Rennes first-team, featuring 43 times in all competitions, scoring one goal and assisting two more.

Eduardo Camavinga (Getty Images)
Eduardo Camavinga celebrates after a match (Getty Images)

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has done a solid job so far since taking over the reins at the club. But for United to return to the old heights, the squad needs to be strengthened further in the summer transfer window. While a new striker and a right-sided winger should be a top priority for the 20-time English champions, bringing in another defensive midfielder would be a smart move by the club.

At the moment, Nemanja Matic is the only out-and-out defensive midfielder at Manchester United’s disposal. While both Scott McTominay and Fred can play in the No.6, both of them have looked much more effective operating in a more box-to-box role.

Camavinga the long-term replacement for Matic?

With Matic set to turn 32 in a few months and entering the final year of his contract, it would be wise for United to identify and groom a long-term replacement for the Serbian. To that end, Camavinga would be a fine acquisition for the Red Devils.

Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic in action. (Getty Images)
Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic in action (Getty Images)

The 17-year-old has featured in all but three of Rennes’ Ligue 1 matches this season, starting 24 of those. The fact that they finished 3rd in the Ligue 1 table and boasted the joint second-best defensive record in the competition is partly down to Camavinga’s impressive performances at the base of the midfield.

The teenage sensation has posted brilliant numbers over the course of the season. His tally of 142 tackles and interceptions is the fifth-best tally across Europe’s top five leagues. In addition, he has averaged 4.3 tackles per game, which is the most by any player in Europe’s top five leagues.

These numbers provide a glimpse of the quality that Camavinga possesses. And given that he is just 17 years old, the Frenchman is bound to get better with age and experience. Hence, signing him would equip Manchester United with a long-term replacement for Matic in the defensive midfield role.

Eduardo Camavinga (R) (Getty Images)
Eduardo Camavinga (R) in action for Rennes (Getty Images)

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Verdict

Camavinga has demonstrated great quality and potential in his breakthrough season for Rennes. Signing the 17-year-old would add further depth to the defensive midfield position at Manchester United. It would also provide them with a long-term heir for the ageing Nemanja Matic.

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