Man Utd urged to hand new contract to ‘outstanding’ ace with big influence ‘straight away’

Man Utd: Solskjaer says Cavani demanded no.7 shirt

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Former Manchester United striker Mark Hughes has urged the Red Devils to extend Edinson Cavani’s contract. Cavani has impressed since joining United on a free transfer this season after leaving PSG, netting seven goals and providing two assists in 23 appearances in all competitions.

The 33-year-old signed a one-year deal in October and United do have an option to extend it for a further year.

Hughes, who won two league titles during his time at Old Trafford, believes his former side should take up that option because Cavani has “had a big influence” and is “an outstanding player”.

Speaking to talkSPORT, he said: “He does make a difference to United in my view.

“Prior to him coming to the club, [Marcus] Rashford, [Anthony] Martial and [Mason] Greenwood were all tried through the middle but I never felt any of them really knew the role as you need to know the role – being the main target and the focus of attacks.

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“Whereas when Cavani plays you sense that the team has a little bit more focus and direction towards the top end of the pitch.

“The other guys can now play in a position they favour.

“He’s had a big influence, and if it was my decision I’d sign him straight away because I think he’s an outstanding player.”

Gary Neville has also praised the influence of Cavani, admitting he was initially “nervous” when the forward joined but he believes Cavani has “been a revelation”.

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Speaking to Sky Sports, Neville said:”Yeah I was a little bit nervous.

“Obviously the last minute nature of his arrival, reminiscent of signings that have gone wrong over the past few years for Manchester United. But I have to say he’s been a revelation.

His attitude, which is the only real question about him because his quality is fantastic, is spot on. His out of possession work is far better than Martial, Rashford and Greenwood.

“They’ve got a lot to learn those young players in terms of how he operates when Manchester United haven’t got the ball and I think ultimately, those young three I’ve named, haven’t grabbed that No 9 spot.

“He’s come in, off the bench to start with, then you see his movement when he’s started playing, they look more physical up front when he’s there and he’s done brilliantly for United in this last month or so.”

Manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer also praised Cavani recently, saying: “I think he has done really well, he’s been excellent.

“He’s obviously been injured, anyone can be injured. He came late [in the transfer window] so I’m really pleased with his influence. In the dressing room, his habits that he brings to training, his attitude to the game. You can see how well he looks after himself.

“He’s scored some very important goals for us and it gives us experience, he gives a lot. He’s just going to be here, better and better of course because he was out for seven months. We’ve been patient with him and I think he’s made a big impact.”

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