Man Utd transfer news: Fred better joining Barcelona or Real Madrid instead – ex-team-mate
Fred is poised to sign on the dotted line at Old Trafford after an agreement was reached with Shakhtar Donetsk on Tuesday.
And he joins Manchester United with a promising reputation following a strong spell under Mircea Lucescu and Paolo Fonseca in Ukraine.
Fred is expected to go straight into Jose Mourinho’s first-team to play alongside Paul Pogba and Nemanja Matic in midfield.
However, an unnamed former team-mate of the 25-year-old believes he would have been better off heading to Spain or United’s rivals Manchester City instead.
“Fred’s a good player skilfully, though he’s not physically strong or quick,” they told the South China Morning Post.
“He’d be fine going to Barcelona, Real Madrid or Manchester City where the team is already strong and he could fill in if the stars are tired or injured, but I think United need different types of players at the moment.
“Maybe Jose Mourinho has seen something in Fred which he thinks can improve his side.”
Fred is set to follow in Kleberson, Anderson and Rodrigo Possebon’s footsteps and become the fourth Brazilian midfielder to play for United.
Possebon, who left United for Santos eight years ago, reckons his countryman has what it takes to play a starring role in Manchester.
“He’s a versatile midfielder, can play any position in the centre of the park, but his best role is as a box-to-box midfielder, because of his capacity to defend, create and finish,” said Possebon.
“He has energy, pace and power, great technique, has good passing vision, dribbling ability and plays with both feet.
“He has all the attributes that one seeks in a midfielder at an excellent level.”
Possebon’s views were echoed by Fred’s former Shakhtar coach Miguel Cardoso.
“He is perfect, perfect,” said Cardoso. “If Fred needs to fight, he’ll fight. When he needs to play, he plays. He’s very brave, very brave.
“He’s a player with great ambition, that doesn’t have a fear of playing in any situation, any context.
“He is the type of player that, when things are going badly, you can give the ball to him. He has balls of steel – to use the expression. He has such a strong nerve.
“His technical capacity is enormous. And in challenges, as I say, even though he’s small, he’s strong.
“But the real positive to him being small is that he doesn’t have a problem playing in tight spaces, and coming out with the ball to drive play.
“He’s also excellent box to box, has that energy, and is so good tactically. He has a deep understanding. When Paolo [Fonseca] arrived at Shakhtar, he liked him a lot.
“So, whatever Jose will ask of him, he will try to do it well. He’s also decisive, that I think Mourinho will like.”