Rightly or wrongly, David Moyes' first transaction in the January transfer window is likely going to be the purchase of a left-back.

With the predicted summer departure of the long-serving Patrice Evra looking increasingly cemented, it's practically all but assured that either Leighton Baines or Luke Shaw will be targeted by United.

However whilst Leighton Baines has but one viable transfer option on the cards, the latter of those two men has also been linked with Jose Mourinho's Chelsea.

According to reports surfacing today, it's Stamford Bridge that Shaw wants to eventually continue his development, and I for one think that's it's the right decision for the youngster to make.

Chelsea's ever-present Ashley Cole is ageing and, although until the end of the current season and maybe continuing into next campaign he may be able to stake his claim for a position in the starting XI, it's only fair to say that he is in the twilight of his career.

His current understudy, Ryan Bertrand, is talented, but with the greatest possible respect he is not possessive of the all-round ability needed to replace Cole.

By the age of 24 you can generally begin to assess how good a player is, and his possible credentials for the future. Bertrand, who is 25 next year, hasn't yet managed to break through into the Chelsea team convincingly and, despite having loan experience from a host of clubs, has never really proved himself in the Premier League.

Shaw on the other hand, six years Bertrand's minor, looks comfortable both at the back and going forward, and is only going to develop further. Add onto this the fact that so far this year he has excelled in England's top flight and you can begin to see why he is a better option.

As previously stated, interest is high in Shaw, and David Moyes has been keen to bring him to Old Trafford since the summer months.

However the youngster should see that in the current climate, and with the other interests that the Red Devils' boss seems hell bent on bringing to fruition, his game-time and possibly therefore his develop would be hampered.

The reports, quotes and speculation make for plain reading that Moyes has made Leighton Baines his primary target for January, and after a mooted £15million purchase, is unlikely to leave him on the bench.

One look at the United career of Wilfried Zaha to date is evidence enough that Moyes is not going to play a youngster purely because he arrives with a high level of anticipation surrounding his playing abilities, and either Patrice Evra or Leighton Baines would provide a sterner test for Shaw than the likes of Nani and Antonio Valencia do for Zaha.

There's also then the factor to fathom that United are a club in undoubtable transition, and therefore it may be hard for an 18-year-old to come in and settle in a way that gives him the best possible chance of realising his potential.

In stark contrast choosing Chelsea would give Shaw the avenue to move to a club who have a proven great as a manager and have a solid, set way of doing things.

Some may argue that plenty of youngsters have joined Chelsea and failed to make the grade, but the left-back position is one that is unlikely to have any major competition bar Bertrand, who is probably better suited to playing at left-midfield.

I think that Shaw would benefit from a move to Stamford Bridge, and could effectively spend a few months under the tutelage of Ashley Cole, before taking his place in the first-team. A move to United could easily place him below Baines in the pecking order, and at a club whose long-term future as perennial title challengers is far from assured.

The Saints' starlet apparently sees Chelsea as his dream move. He would do well to follow his heart.

Topics:
Football
Manchester United
Chelsea
Luke Shaw