The January transfer window is fast approaching, and reports suggest two Premier League giants could be set for a titanic tussle over Juventus ace Alex Sandro.
Manchester United and Chelsea are both reported to be preparing bids for the 26-year-old.
We’ve taken a look at which side needs him most, and whether Stamford Bridge or Old Trafford would be the more appealing option for the Brazilian…
If there’s one thing United seriously lack right now, it’s a top-class left-back. Ashley Young has been a surprisingly good stand-in at full-back this season, but playing a 32-year-old winger in the role is hardly a blueprint for the future.
As far as Luke Shaw goes, the largely unfit and underperforming 21-year-old looks likely to leave in January. Jose Mourinho isn’t a fan, and the club would be wise to get some of their £30m investment back before his contract ends in June 2018.
Sandro would definitely offer more pace and creativity to a solid but uninspiring United backline. And his 89% passing accuracy in Serie A this term suggests he’s not just classy, but very reliable.
He could also reunite with Paul Pogba to good effect. The pair linked up regularly for Juventus during their double-winning season of 2015-16, and the Brazilian’s potential future as United’s left-back could bring the best out of both players.
Blues boss Antonio Conte has built his success at Stamford Bridge on a consistent starting line-up. That’s especially true in defence.
Cesar Azpilicueta has started 17 of the club’s 18 league games this term, while Gary Cahill has started 15 of the last 17 in all competitions.
The latter is now 32-years-old. While he’s been an excellent servant to Chelsea, Conte will surely be eyeing up a replacement who is both proven and has the necessary big-game experience.
In his mid-twenties, Sandro’s peak could well still be ahead of him. And as a player who’s impressed in Champions League, Copa Libertadores and Coppa Italia Finals, he certainly has the ability and mindset for the biggest occasions.
On paper, the former FC Porto man would be a welcome addition for either side. However, Man United look the more in need of the Brazil international.
The combination of left-back issues and a possibility of a reunion with Pogba mean Mourinho should pull out all the stops to sign him. Add the need for more creativity on the flanks from this workmanlike United side, and he seems the ideal fit.
Next up for the North-West giants is a visit to Bristol City in the Carabao Cup on Wednesday night. The Red Devils are 2/5 favourites to Win in 90 minutes.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing