Claimed to be on the verge of a transfer to Premier League champions Manchester United. This young winger at Ligue 1 side Bordeaux has been on the radar of some of Europe’s top clubs. But who exactly is Gabriel Obertan? The Transfer Tavern asked Football Fancast columnist The New Voice of Football to investigate.
Should this tricky young winger indeed arrive at Old Trafford then one of the first questions asked, will surely be is 20-year-old Gabriel Obertan the player to replace Cristiano Ronaldo at United? No pressure then, but the French Under-21 International has already been hailed as the ‘Future Thierry Henry’ in some quarters. So should be no stranger to expectation, which should stand him in good stead, as there will be plenty of that heaped on his shoulders at the Premiership giants.
A product of the fabled Clairefontaine Academy in France, young Gabriel has been on the radar of Serie A sides Inter and AC Milan along with Arsenal and Chelsea, who are reported to have been tracking Obertan since 2007.
However, it is Sir Alex Ferguson, who will win the battle for his signature, according to Les Girondins president Jean-Louis Triaud.
“It’s actually a great possibility. United want him and we would be delighted to see Gabriel develop in such a club. We will make it official when the moment comes,” Triaud is quoted as telling French paper L’Equipe.
Obertan has notched up 54 Ligue 1 appearances for the French side since making his senior debut in 2006 and is valued in the region of as little as £2.7million by Transfermarket.co.uk. So lets take a look and see if Sir Alex has unearthed another gem and at, what could be a snip of a price?
So as you can see the youngster has a fair bit of trickery about him along with that all-important asset of pace and with all those step-overs is a little reminiscent of Ronaldo, when he arrived in England. However, it is thought that Obertan is far from the finished article. The winger has only had 16 starts in France and was loaned out to Lorient for the latter half of last season from the French champions.
His goal-scoring record is not great either, with only 6 in 79 total career appearances for club and country and on the surface looks like possibly one for the future. Ferguson having already shelled out some of his £80million transfer kitty, from the sale of Ronaldo on Antonio Valencia, who is a more natural and ready successor to the Portuguese star.
Capped by the French Under-21’s 8 times, Obertan is considered as one of the brightest prospects in France and could flourish under the Scot at United, with Ferguson having an impressive record of nurturing young talent through at the right pace at Old Trafford.
Should the young starlet arrive as expected at United from the French side at a price that won’t make a big hole in Ferguson’s budget. Will Obertan prosper under the guidance of Ferguson and Fly in the Premier League? Or will young Gabriel Die on his backside under the weight of expectancy like many before him?
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