Despite interest from Chelsea, numerous sources report that Manchester United are closing in on a £22 million deal for Barcelona winger Pedro Rodríguez. United have already spent £76 million in this transfer window - signing Memphis Depay, Matteo Darmian, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Morgan Schneiderlin - however, a deal for Pedro could be the best value for money of them all.
UNDENIABLY A TOP CLASS PLAYER
Pedro has been struggling for his place at Barcelona, limited to mostly substitute appearances. This is no discredit to him - Barcelona were Europe's best team last season.
However, despite a bit part role, Pedro has scored more than 10 times in each of the last six Barcelona seasons - considering that he's competing with the likes of Lionel Messi, Luís Suárez, David Villa, Alexis Sánchez and Samuel Eto'o, this is an excellent return. In total. He has scored 98 goals for Barcelona and has a goal return of 31%, impressive for a player who's main function is to dribble.
Pedro is only 27, so still in the prime years of his career, yet he has experience playing at the very top level amongst world class players. Plus, he has already won La Liga, Copa del Rey, UEFA Champions League, Club World Cup, FIFA World Cup and the European Championship trophies. So, he's about as experienced a player as exists in world football right now. This would be useful in a relatively inexperienced Manchester United squad.
The fact that Pedro still puts in a huge amount of effort and performs well, despite being slightly out of favour, shows he has an excellent work ethic to boot. He scored in the Champions League final against Manchester United, and has scored in El Clasico matches before - this shows a big game mentality.
Considering his technical talents and mental strengths, £22 million is a small fee - Manchester United would be signing an experienced, proven and highly talented player with many years remaining at the top. This compilation (interestingly saying "Welcome to Chelsea") gives an excellent impression of the pedigree that Pedro possesses.
A GOOD FIT FOR UNITED'S TEAM
With Ángel Di María likely to leave this summer, Pedro would fit in excellently. Manchester United have been trialling a 4-3-3 formation in pre-season, and Pedro would compliment Wayne Rooney and Memphis Depay very well - as well as chipping in with goals, Pedro is a creative genius and could work well with Rooney. Indeed, if United are looking to play attractive, passing football, Pedro's experience of Barcelona tiki-taka could be invaluable.
In short - United are close to signing a player of proven quality with plenty of quality for a relatively small fee; this excellent transfer business.