Thursday 14 December 2017

Michael Owen explains why Man United might be better off not signing Antoine Griezmann

Atletico Madrid's French forward Antoine Griezmann celebrates after scoring a goal during the Spanish league football match RCD Espanyol vs Club Atletico de Madrid at the RCDE Stadium in Cornella de Llobregat on April 22, 2017.
(Photo by Xavier Bonilla/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Atletico Madrid's French forward Antoine Griezmann celebrates after scoring a goal during the Spanish league football match RCD Espanyol vs Club Atletico de Madrid at the RCDE Stadium in Cornella de Llobregat on April 22, 2017. (Photo by Xavier Bonilla/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Ben Burrows

Michael Owen says signing Antoine Griezmann would be the worst thing Manchester United could do for Marcus Rashford's development.

The Atletico Madrid star is one of Jose Mourinho's number one transfer targets this summer as he looks to build a squad capable of challenging for the title next year.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic is United's top scorer but a serious knee injury has thrust Rashford into the spotlight late in the season with the 19-year-old appearing to relish his increased role in the Swede's absence.

And Owen believes that bringing in a player of Griezmann's stature could hurt the England striker's progression at Old Trafford.

"I think Griezmann is a brilliant player, obviously he is brilliant," he told Goal. "What Manchester United must weigh up is, do you spend that £80 million when you have Rashford?

"All of a sudden, for him, you are not sending a great message to pick someone straight ahead of him. At the moment it is perfect for Rashford, because you know you have got Zlatan ahead of him but you haven’t got Zlatan there forever."

Owen envisions a situation where Ibrahimovic takes up his one-year option with the club that would allow Rashford to grow naturally into United's eventual first choice No.9 rather than be usurped by another big name signing.

"Rashford needs Jose to give him the ultimate belief and say ‘right you are going to be my man, you are going to be it’," he added. "If he doesn’t think that just yet then the last thing he needs is for Jose to buy someone who will be there for the long term."

(© Independent News Service)

Irish Independent Sport Star Awards

Pick our magic sports moment of the year and win a trip for two to London. To view the shortlist and cast your vote click here.

Independent News Service

Promoted Links

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Promoted Links

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport