As Robin van Persie’s Old Trafford departure edges closer it has emerged that Manchester United have contact West Ham about the availability of Diafra Sakho.
MailOnline’s Simon Jones broke the news that the Red Devils have ‘shown an interest’ in the Senegalese striker, who has supposedly impressed their scouts since signing for the Irons last summer.
The idea that United may be considering letting the two-time Premier League top goalscorer go on the cheap in order to bring in a man who was plying his trade in the French second tier two seasons ago may seem bizarre.
However, one glance at last season’s statistics should dispel that notion.
Both men finished the top-flight campaign with totals of ten goals and two assists to their names.
When the fact that Sakho, 5/1 to join the Reds before then end of the transfer window, played less football than the man he may replace is considered, his 2014/15 looks even better in relation.
RVP played 2114 minutes to the Senegal striker’s 1761, meaning that the latter’s per-90-minutes efficiency is superior on both counts.
Yet the superiority of Sakho’s contribution doesn’t end there, he was also more of a thorn in the side of the opposition in the air and with the ball at his feet.
He won 4.15 aerial duels per 90 minutes to the Dutchman’s 1.36 last term, also taking on and beating an average 1.23 opponents to Van Persie’s 0.90.
Without the ball the younger man out tackled and intercepted his more esteemed contemporary, boasting means of 0.82 and 0.77 respectively for every hour and a half of action, dwarfing the United forward’s 0.64 and 0.26 in the process.
Six year’s Van Persie’s junior, Sakho bested the Netherlands international on a whole range of relevant performance measures last term while playing for a lesser team.
Surrounded by a higher calibre supporting cast he should have little troubled justifying the interest of the Old Trafford talent spotters.