Manchester United have "got to keep" Edinson Cavani beyond the end of the season, according to Owen Hargreaves, who says the Red Devils don't need to spend £100 million ($138m) on Harry Kane or Erling Haaland.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been tipped to bring in a new No.9 when the transfer market reopens, with Tottenham captain Kane and Borussia Dortmund talisman Haaland reportedly at the top of his list of targets.
Cavani's future at Old Trafford remains up in the air as he heads towards the final two months of his contract, but Hargreaves has advised United to retain the 34-year-old's services and invest their money in more pressing areas of the pitch.
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What's been said?
The former Red Devils midfielder told BT Sport of his admiration for Cavani: "You’ve got to keep him, he’s fabulous. I think, first of all, he’s a great goal scorer and his minutes per goal show that. He’s the best player at United for that.
“I think everyone would love to have Harry Kane and Haaland, but with Cavani there, you don’t have to go and spend £100 million on a player because if you spend it there, then there are other positions needed.
“They need a right-winger, they need a central midfielder, they need a centre-back. With Cavani there, he’s almost an insurance policy and you can go and spend it on three other players in important positions.
“I think if Cavani played the whole of next season, then he could easily get you 25 goals, with the other boys. Just as a mentor for Marcus Rashford, Mason Greenwood and [Anthony] Martial – he’s perfect. I would 100% keep him and invest the money in other positions.”
What has Solskjaer said about Cavani's future?
Cavani's father stirred up fresh transfer rumours last month when he claimed that his son is unhappy in England and wants to return to South America at the earliest possible opportunity.
Solskjaer addressed the ongoing speculation before United's 3-1 win at Tottenham at the weekend, admitting that the Uruguay international is mulling over his options ahead of the summer window.
“I’ve kept in touch with Edi of course. We keep an open dialogue and he’s still unsure what he wants to do next season, which I find fine,” said the United boss.
“It's not been easy year either for him or the rest of the world, this season, so he still wants time to make his mind up.”
Cavani's record at United
Cavani arrived at Old Trafford on a free transfer last October after leaving Paris Saint-Germain, where he became the club's all-time record goalscorer before injuries saw him fall down the squad pecking order.
Fitness issues have continued to plague the Uruguayan in Manchester, but he has still managed to score nine goals in his first 16 starts for United, including one during their Europa League quarter-final second clash with Granada on Thursday.
Cavani has made 30 appearances across all competitions in total and also has two assists to his name, and the Red Devils do still have the option to extend his contract by an extra year.