It was a stroke of genius from Carlo Ancelotti that took David Beckham to Paris Saint-Germain in January this year.
Though the legendary midfielder only appeared 14 times for the French champions, it was his presence at the club and aura as an established professional who had been and done it all that smoothed over the transition in place.
Whilst PSG were pumping money into their side in an attempt to bring them up to speed with the European big boys, Beckham's arrival settled things down and helped to establish a sense of stability.
And it's with a hint of irony that it can be said that Manchester United are now seeking that same kind of player to assist David Moyes. Granted they're not experiencing any mass squad overhaul, and the values upon which most of the success of the last two decades have been built on very much remain at the forefront of the club's intentions, but there are similarities to be drawn.
They have Ryan Giggs to somewhat fill the void, but the fact that he has been a pillar at Old Trafford for a number of years in a way negates the impact he can have on the squad.
What Moyes needs is a man who will come with a world-class reputation, and one that could go some way to smoothing over the transitional period that the Red Devils find themselves in due to Sir Alex Ferguson's departure.
For me- and I know it's a controversial choice- Ronaldinho is a man that fits the bill.
The Brazilian maestro has done all there is to do in his glittering career, and now that he is edging closer to retirement he possesses the experience and level-headedness needed to provide he service United need.
There has been talk of late of him returning to Paris Saint-Germain to finish his career, but I think there's every chance he could be lured to Old Trafford to do the same thing.
His knowledge of the game and reputation are surely comparable to any great still plying their trade in Europe, and with his history of personal success- he has a smattering of World Player of the Year awards to sit alongside his Ballon d'Or from 2005- he would be revered by the younger talents.
Aside from that he's still a ridiculously skilful player, who could step in where needed if Moyes was looking for a versatile attacker to provide cover for the rest of the season.
Sure, in the long run he's never going to replicate the performances that saw him rule supreme over Europe with Barcelona, but there's no reason why he can't be utilised to bring a sense of calm to the Premier League champions in a period of relative uncertainty. And for the short-term he is a viable option in terms of someone who would improve their stock.
Pirlo was talked about, and would be another ideal candidate, but with the Italian suggesting that he wants to retire in he Serie A, there isn't much scope for that move happening; especially not with the host of other clubs that would be battling for him as well.
He may not be the perfect role model that Beckham had become by the time he moved to the Parc des Princes to call time on his career, but there's little doubt in mind that with a legacy as rich as his, Ronaldinho couldn't to some extent fill the void Paul Scholes left.
Sir Alex Ferguson always regretted missing out on bringing one of the game's greats to Old Trafford, would David Moyes benefit from taking one last punt at it?
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