It’s been ten days since Manchester United announced that they’d reach an agreement with Shakhtar Donetsk to sign Brazilian midfielder Frederico Rodrigues de Paula Santos, or, as he’s more commonly known, Fred. In that time, United have confirmed the transfer of FC Porto’s Diogo Dalot, and unveiled the right back on the club’s website, but the same cannot be said for the Brazilian, who has yet to be officially unveiled.
The Manchester Evening News have revealed the reasons behind a delay that has rattled some of the club’s fans, suggesting that a work permit for Fred has been secured, and that the final details of the deal are still to be completed, hence the lack of official unveiling. Fred completed his medical at United’s Carrington complex last week, and has presumably conducted his first interview as a red already, and whilst it’s rare for the club to have announced a deal for a player without the unveiling, there isn’t thought to be any issues or worries that will stop the deal from getting over the finish line.
Fred’s transfer could be transformative for the club, given how much United’s midfield has struggled for consistency. Nemanja Matic provided some solidity after his summer transfer from Chelsea, but the Serbian was overplayed, and struggled in a midfield duo when selected alongside Paul Pogba at times. The Frenchman had his own problems, after a strong start to the season and had issues regaining his form. Marouane Fellaini looks set to leave the club when his contract expires later this month, and with Michael Carrick retiring at the end of last summer, Jose Mourinho is clearly keen to strengthen his options in the centre of the field. Fred’s transfer should certainly provide his new club with some more options, especially with United needing to start this next season strongly.