Man Utd warned against ‘alerting’ Højlund by man without knowledge of statistics

‘Hojlund scored nine goals for Atalanta in his 1,836 minutes on the pitch with a conversion rate of just 16.7 percent’. Just?

A hint of deception
Manchester United transfer news is the big driver of July traffic to football websites, so it’s hardly a surprise to see this headline Mirror website:

Transfer news LIVE: Hojlund drops Man Utd tip, Bayern offer £70m Kane, Arsenal’s Mbappe chance

We’re giddy about this ‘tip’, although we’re keeping expectations low: is it a signed Manchester United shirt? Do you follow on Instagram? It is described as a ‘KEY EVENT’ so it must be big.

It looks like Atalanta have dropped a big hint about the future of Manchester United target Rasmus Hojlund, reports Daniel Orme.

Oh FFS. It is already only ‘shown’ and it is now Atalanta and not Hojlund who drops hints, but they have our click, so who are the fools? And here we are now so…

According to L’Equipe, the Italian team is already planning for life without the former Sturm Graz striker.

It is suggested they are closing in on a deal for Almeria’s El Bilal Toure.

The Red Devils could also provide them with Hojlund’s natural successor, with the suspended Mason Greenwood being considered by the Atalanta hierarchy ahead of next season.

So a French newspaper has said that an Italian club wants a Malian footballer who plays for a Spanish club to replace a Danish striker joining an English team.

It’s basically nailed down. If anything, it’s more than a “tip”.

Lies, damned lies and statistics
But all this is of course intended, because Erik ten Hag will certainly not buy Rasmus Hojlund after the weekend’s revelations from People capable Steve Bates who broke traffic records this weekend.

Regarding Rasmus Højlund’s scouting report, Erik ten Hag has a lot to think about at Man Utd

The implication here is clearly that Ten Hag have received an ‘immediate’ scouting report when the story is that Bates himself has spoken to two scouts who have doubts about a player who scored nine goals in 32 Serie A games last season .

But it’s the statistics that have really perplexed Bates, who writes:

Hojlund scored nine goals for Atalanta in his 1,836 minutes on the pitch with a conversion rate of just 16.7 per cent, but the eleven clear chances he missed will be alarming to United fans.

Does that mean he has a conversation with every sixth person he meets?

Sorry, that’s unnecessarily facetious; let’s ignore the typo and concentrate on the stats.

So Hojlund actually scored with one out of every six shots for Atalanta last season. Want to guess how many Serie A players scored a) more goals and b) had a better ‘conversation’ rate last season? It’s a massive four: Boulaye Dia, Marko Arnautovic, Ademola Lookman and Victor Osimhen. That is all.

And what was Marcus Rashford’s conversion rate for Manchester United in the Premier League last season? Only 16 per cent For math fans, that’s less than 16.7%. It’s almost as if Hojlund actually did okay with limited minutes – he started just 20 Serie A games – and limited service.

As for the ‘eleven clear chances he missed’ which will be alarming to United fans? Anyone want to tell Bates that Haaland missed 28 and Rashford missed 22 last season?

We tend to agree on that Manchester United need a more polished striker than Højlund but scoring with one in six shots makes him more lethal in front of goal than 22/23 Mo Salah, Aleksandar Mitrović or Bukayo Saka.

Statistics without context are about as useful as strikers without midfielders.

The sun
‘s Manchester United man Martin Blackburn played it pretty straight when he reported that ‘MANCHESTER UNITED will make a big push to land Andre Onana as their new keeper this week’, but no fool clicks that so…

Man Utd closing in on Andre Onana’s transfer whoop… as reason he replaces David de Gea revealed

Because absolutely nobody knew that Erik ten Hag ‘definitely wants a goalkeeper who can play out from the back’ until the 11th episode of this otherwise anodyne Sun story.

Well, everyone just thought he was replacing De Gea for guffaws and giggles.

Ain’t too proud to beg
To ‘beg’ is – according to the dictionary – to ‘ask someone sincerely or humbly for something’. So we had high hopes for some Oliver Twist-style requests from Thiago Silva to the upcoming Chelsea signing Paulo Dybala.

‘Agent’ Thiago Silva reveals he begged Paulo Dybala to complete Chelsea transfer and says World Cup winner replied

These quotes from Thiago in full from The Sun website:

“I saw Paulo Dybala here, they are talking about him at Chelsea. I hope he comes.

“I have spoken to him and asked him if he is coming, he answered me, but I cannot say what he told me.”

Have some dignity, man.

Oh and…

So Thiago didn’t beg. And Dybala didn’t answer. Other than that, The Sun has absolutely nailed this.

‘West Ham leave Declan Rice OUT of their new kit launch with the midfielder set to complete a £105m move. move to Arsenal this summer’ – MailOnline.

No dude.

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