Gary Neville agrees with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer that Edinson Cavani should remain with Manchester United next season – but admits that he had fears over the striker’s arrival at Old Trafford.
The Uruguayan ace displayed his attacking prowess in United’s 3-1 victory over Tottenham on Sunday, scoring a stunning goal and also seeing another impressive strike controversially ruled out.
The 34-year-old Cavani, who signed from French side Paris Saint-Germain last summer, is reportedly ready to continue his career in South America having failed to settle down in England.
His class remains clear though and Solskjaer insists the club are working hard to try and keep Cavani beyond this season.
“We have had up front and honest meetings. There’s no secret, we want to keep him,” Solskjaer told reporters after his side’s victory in north London.
“He’s contemplating and thinking hard and long about what he wants to do, and I understand. He knows what I want, him at Old Trafford at the Stretford End scoring a diving header, there’s not a better feeling. So let’s wait and see.”
Red Devils legend Neville has also been impressed with Cavani, despite having fears that he would struggle to live up to expectations like Old Trafford flops Radamel Falcao and Alexis Sanchez.
In fact, Neville believes that United should prioritise Cavani’s extension – as it will benefit Mason Greenwood and Marcus Rashford.
Speaking on the Gary Neville Podcast, he said: “Tottenham had a throw with two minutes to go, and Cavani was moving between the centre-backs trying to stop the ball from being thrown in, and he’s organising where Greenwood should be. I thought: ‘Greenwood needs another year of Cavani being alongside him.’
“It inspired us as young players when you saw great players like Bryan Robson and Steve Bruce and Eric Cantona and Mark Hughes.
“And you see the best players in the world, or those who have been the best in the world like Cavani, doing his work like that in the 94th minute, someone like Mason Greenwood, who needs people who are mentors, good standards above him, who can coach him on the pitch, I just thought him and Marcus Rashford need another year of Cavani.
“He’s been a really brilliant example. I was a little bit nervous of him coming in, because of Falcao, Alexis Sanchez, showcase signings. This one has been different. He’s really applied himself brilliantly and has been a big help to Manchester United.
“He does the right things. The right movements. It’s clockwork, that run across the defender, across the near post, the one you’re always trying to get young strikers to do.”
Sign up to the Mirror Football email here for the latest news and transfer gossip.