MIDDLESBROUGH, ENGLAND - JULY 20: Lucas of Brazil holds off Aaron Ramsey and Jack Cork of GB during the international friendly match between Team GB and Brazil at Riverside Stadium on July 20, 2012 in Middlesbrough, England. (Photo by Julian Finney/Getty Images)
Numerous news outlets in the UK, including SkySports and ESPN Soccernet, are reporting that a deal with Sao Paulo has been reached for Lucas Moura. The fee being reported is in the neighborhood of £30 million. Reports are also circulating that Sir Alex Ferguson did not make the trip to Norway for today's friendly to hold contract talks with Moura. There may be some truth to this as Lucas' Olympic Brazilian squad prepares to play their next game at Old Trafford in the coming days. As exciting a player as Lucas Moura is, that is a lot of funds to spend on a player that plays a position with plenty of options currently.
On that note, what does this potential transfer say about the feelings of Sir Alex on his wide options? Ashley Young has been at the club for only a year and showed definite promise on the left flank until an injury around the New Year forced him out of extended action. With a transfer fee in the region of £16 million last summer, he will be at Old Trafford for the forseeable future. Antonio Valencia was brought in as a replacement for Cristiano Ronaldo 3 seasons ago and has preformed exceptionally well as an old fashioned winger. Last campaign he started slowly due to required recovery time from his severely broken ankle suffered in Champions League play the previous term, but once fully fit he was completely unplayable.
Read after the jump for United's other winger.
That leaves Nani. There have been rumors that contract negotiations between the Portuguese winger and the club have stalled as of late. Additionally, there have been consistent reports of bids from a handful of European clubs for the services of Nani over the past 12 months. Another point to consider is the on-field chemistry Nani has with the rest of the squad. Throughout a game featuring both Wayne Rooney and Nani, it becomes nearly impossible to count the number of times the former will either glare or yell at the latter for continued selfish play.
This leads into the similarities between Nani and Lucas Moura, which are actually quite startling when you watch Moura's highlights. World-class dribbling skills combined with a penchant for selfishness run rampant when watching both players. Many on The Busby Babe have voiced their opinion that Nani is "unplayable when he's on". The same can certainly be said for Lucas Moura as well, but in a younger, more powerful body.
Based on the apparent shoot-first mentality of both of these players, it presents the important question, would they be able to coexist on the pitch together? That question may be answered in the next few weeks but this writer thinks the arrival of Lucas Moura means the imminent departure of another young winger.