Nothing says “We’re back in the big time” more clearly than Leeds United being linked with a swoop for Edinson Cavani this summer.
The 33-year-old is a free agent after leaving PSG, and has continually been linked with a shock move to Elland Road – to the extent that ESPN Uruguay claim he has already been offered a deal by the Whites.
Of course, any deal for a player of his status is never likely to be easy, and Bleacher Report have suggested more recently that Leeds are wary of the player’s personal demands.
Perhaps that’s understandable.
A player like Cavani will never come cheap, after all.
But would he be worth taking an expensive risk on in the Premier League?
On the face of it, it looks like a no-brainer.
Cavani has a higher shot accuracy rate than Patrick Bamford in 2019/20, as well as having more goals per game, a higher xG, a higher total action success rate, and more successful dribbles, as per Wyscout.
Above is a shot map of Cavani’s last 75 shots on goal.
Excluding the ones from outside the area, approximately half are on target, and nine ended up in the back of the net.
That means he was scoring once in every 8.33 shots.
And this goal from February shows that he is still as sharp as ever in front of goal.
Cavani picks up the ball just inside the opponent’s half, and that’s really even the attack gets going properly.
Full credit to Cavani, his pass into space is perfect, but rather than just resting on his laurels, he kicks on and tries to get up in support.
For a 33-year-old, he covers a lot of ground very quickly, and there can be no questioning his attitude.
In some ways, you would assume that would be the main concern about bringing him in.
Could an ageing player who is used to having chances served up to him on a silver platter for one of the best teams in Europe really slot into the high intensity demands of a Marcleo Bielsa side?
This strike would suggest he’d have a pretty good chance.
By the time the ball is cut back to him, he is in acres of space, and his finish is as calm and precise as you would expect from a man with 50 international goals to his name.
Cavani may not be an easy deal to tie up for financial reasons, but he would without a doubt be a dream signing.
In other Leeds United news, Phil Hay’s shared what he’s heard about Bielsa’s contract.