Belfast Telegraph

Why Rivaldo backs Fred to make success of Manchester United move

The Red Devils have agreed a deal to sign the Brazil midfielder.

Former Brazil star Rivaldo has labelled Fred a wonderful player as the midfielder closes in on a move to Manchester United.

The Red devils confirmed on Tuesday that they have reached an agreement with Shakhtar Donetsk to sign the 25-year-old for a reported fee in excess of £50million.

Fred, who is believed to have met United officials after playing in Brazil’s 2-0 friendly win over Croatia at Anfield on Sunday, is set to arrive at Old Trafford on a reported five-year deal.

The Premier League club announced the news in a brief statement on their official website, which read: “Manchester United is delighted to announce it has reached agreement with Shakhtar Donetsk for the transfer of Frederico Rodrigues de Paula Santos (Fred). A further announcement will be made in due course.”

While little is known of the ex-Internacional man, former world footballer of the year Rivaldo is a big fan – although he did urge caution on judging Fred straight away.

“He is a wonderful player,” the Betfair ambassador said.

“Like any other player when you move to a new country, he will need a little bit of time to adapt.

“But when you are a good player and a brilliant midfielder like he is, he is going to do well and he is going to be good for Manchester United and they will be good for him.”

United boss Jose Mourinho had a need to strengthen his midfield since the retirement of Michael Carrick and with uncertainly over the future of Marouane Fellaini.

Belgium international Fellaini is out of contract at the end of the month as is believed to be a target for a rival top-six Premier League club.

Fred has made eight appearances for his country and has been named in Brazil coach Tite’s final 23-man squad for the World Cup in Russia this summer.

He moved to Donetsk in 2013 and was a part of three league-winning sides. Fred faced United in the Champions League at Old Trafford during David Moyes’ reign, and also played against Manchester City in last season’s competition as Shakhtar reached the last 16.

He is set to become United’s first signing of the summer, with Mourinho also closing in on a deal for Porto full-back Diogo Dalot.

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