Edinson Cavani is “off the charts”, says Phil Bardsley, with the former Manchester United defender admitting that thestriker’s output is “outstanding” given that he is now 33 years of age.
Cavani hit over 100 goals during his time at Napoli, before going on to become Paris Saint-Germain’s all-time leading scorer across seven productive years in France.
He dropped into the free agent pool in 2020 and was duly snapped up by United as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sought to bring added firepower into his ranks.
The Red Devils have eased Cavani into their fold, while also seeing him spend time out injured and suspended, but the target has been found on four occasions through 14 appearances.
His value is not lost on those around him, while Premier League rivals are also aware of the considerable threat he continues to pose.
Bardsley could line up against Cavani for Burnley on Tuesday, with the United academy graduate pleased to see his former club thriving again as title talk builds in Manchester.
He told MUTV: “I think Ole is doing an incredible job with the players, especially with the recruitment, which has been outstanding.
“Bruno Fernandes has been a great signing, as well as Cavani. I think his stats are off the charts when he plays. His physical output for his age is outstanding and, as a whole, everybody’s nose is pointing in the right direction.”
The Scotland international added: “Competing for the title again is good to see. I think the mentality is there and they’ve got the right players to challenge.
“If they keep the focus – I know Ole’s been there before and he’s got the experience and now he’s got the right people around him.”
While Cavani has settled quickly in English football, Portuguese playmaker Fernandes remains the go-to man for United when it comes to flashes of inspiration.
Burnley are yet to face the talented 26-year-old who completed a big-money move from Sporting 12 months ago, but Bardsley is well aware of the headache he will give the Clarets at Turf Moor.
He said of Sean Dyche’s plans to try and contain thetalismanic presence: “We’re quite disciplined in our setup. We’re a well-organised side and he’s certainly somebody we’ll have to keep an eye on playing in that 10 slot.
“The midfielders are going to have a busy night unfortunately! As long as he doesn’t drift out left, I’ll be alright! He’s an outstanding player, but the way we set up, we probably wouldn’t set up to specifically man-mark somebody.
Source : goal.com