Manchester United once again failed to win at Old Trafford on Tuesday night after they were held to a ninth home draw of the season by Everton.
Jose Mourinho’s men could only managed a goalless draw with West Brom four days previous, and they actually had Zlatan Ibrahimovic to thank for salvaging a point against Ronald Koeman’s side, with his last-gasp penalty extending their unbeaten league run to 20 matches.
However, it means that they failed to put the pressure on the Premier League’s top four after a 12th draw of the campaign, and with Arsenal beating West Ham on Wednesday, it means that United have slipped to sixth with just nine games of the season remaining.
Nonetheless, given that they are in the last eight of the Europa League, and still have a chance of a top four finish, there is much to play for between now and May for Mourinho’s men, but that hasn’t stopped speculation building about who they may look to sign in the summer.
And one man they’ve been linked to in recent days is Bayern Munich striker Robert Lewandowski, who has scored 103 goals in just 139 games for the German giants.
United boss Mourinho is reportedly eyeing up a move for the Polish international should striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic decide against extending his stay at Old Trafford beyond the summer.
The 35-year-old has scored 27 goals in all competitions this season for the Red Devils, 17 more than the next highest scorer Juan Mata, and it’s his goals that are a chief reason why they are still in the Europa League, why they have won the League Cup, and still have a faint chance of finishing in the top four.
However, the report suggests that a move for Lewandowski will only happen if Ibrahimovic were to leave this summer, so United fans must be thinking, who is the better option?
Well, with the form Ibrahimovic has been in this term, United fans probably see him as completely irreplaceable, as it’s not just his goals that have been hugely important, but his all round game has helped the Red Devils.
As well as 27 goals this term, the Swedish star has also registered seven assists, four of which have come in the Premier League which means that only Wayne Rooney has laid on more (five).
Clearly, Ibrahimovic is fundamental in everything United do going forward, be it holding his nerve to fire home the penalty on Tuesday evening, being in the right place to head the winner in the League Cup final, or providing the assists for both goals in their Europa League win over Rostov.
And this is something which does set him apart from Lewandowski, with Ibrahimovic having created significantly more chances than the Pole and providing almost double the amount of key passes.
However, if you were to buy Lewandowski, you wouldn’t necessarily buy him to be in the positions to create (albeit it would be a great help), you’d buy him to score goals, which is exactly what he does.
The 28-year-old has 24 goals in just 27 Bundesliga matches this term, which adds to the 30 he got last term, and the 25 in 49 games he got in his first season at the club.
Add in his Borussia Dortmund exploits, and Lewandowski has scored 206 goals in 326 games for the two German outfits, including 145 in the Bundesliga, and 40 in European competition – the man is a natural goal-scorer.
There would obviously be question marks over whether he’d be able to do it in England, as there has been about many players over the years, but Ibrahimovic came to United with many unsure about his capabilities in the Premier League, and he has proved them all wrong. Lewandowski is that good that he’d probably do the same.
You cannot understate the importance Ibrahimovic has on this United side, but if he were to go in the summer, Lewandowski is the perfect replacement, and at 28 years of age, he should be entering his peak years.
And that, based on what he has already achieved, would be a terrifying prospect for any Premier League defence.