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Ando Out Until February – Time To Buy?

Anderson has been ruled out until February with a knee injury he picked up earlier this month.

His last game for United was against Otelul Galati where he was subbed off with ten minutes left to play.

With Tom Cleverley out until Christmas and Sir Alex Ferguson resorting to playing our best striker in midfield to try and bridge the gap in quality we have for this position, surely the manager has to be looking at strengthening our squad with a top midfielder when the transfer window opens.

Anderson was a regular starter for United at the start of the season, playing well alongside Cleverley. However, since Tom’s injury, Ando’s form has been poor.

There have been rumours of United going in for Wesley Sneijder again, although he would be cup-tied for the Champions League. Athletic Bilbao’s Javi Martinez would be a more realistic target though.

Whilst January buys are fairly rare at United, surely Anderson’s injury should force Ferguson’s hand… even if there’s no value.


About Scott

Scott is the editor of Red Matters - 50 Years of Supporting Manchester United and an author of Play Like Fergie's Boys and Not Nineteen Forever. He writes for ESPN, The Metro and Bleacher Report. Follow @R_o_M on Twitter.

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231 Comments

  1. StatesideAussie says:

    Wayne … I also can’t see us going for Sneijder, given the cost etc.

    But on a factual note, I believe he’s a year younger than you seem to think. He is currently 27 and won’t turn 28 until the off-season (June 9 next year). That would mean he would contribute his first full year at 28, not 29, and it would be a full year at 28 too. It seems his age has been consistently misreported. Back in the summer, people were saying he was already too old, even though he had only just turned 27 by a few weeks (in fact, when the last transfer window opened, he was still 26). I thought if he had come in the last window, he could have easily contributed five years at his prime (27 all this season, 28 next, then 29, 30 and 31) and still given good service beyond that. That would have been OK.

  2. WillieRedNut says:

    Injury prone.

  3. Jeet says:

    I dont understand the guys calling for Becks…seriously, do you imagine Fergie would ever hold that big ask a guy who he had once literally booted out of OT to come back and aid him? Both parties speak fondly of each other today, and probably realize it was a heat of the moment thing, but a line was drawn in the sand that day, make no mistake about it. And talking pf practical realities, Becks was a right winger last I heard, unless he is playing CMF in the states. As a right winger, he was never pacy or skillful, but had great stamina, knew when to pass the ball to the midfield, and had the best right footed cross in the world. At his age, without the equivalent of Scholes-Keane in the mf, he won’t cut it as a winger at United, that too, ahead of Nani ffs. As a cmf, he’s hardly going to be the solution against top opposition, is he? Wasn’t at his prime, how do you expect it now? Mind you, he would still probably give you 5 goals from freekicks but in terms of general play, he won’t cut it.

  4. Gee says:

    ITS TIME FOR RAVEL!! We dont need to buy just let the lad loose for fuck sake!!

    Although I’m thinking SAF is worried that when Ravel takes the game by storm he may well get a bit big headed and start doing a bit of a Balotelli off the field but without being thick as fuck!! I do think its time to unleash the lad tho, bring the fucking A game to Shitty and show them what we are really about!!

  5. King Eric says:

    Giggs12 – Hello mate. I have to disagree that Arsenal Spurs etc have better midfields. We boss every game we play against them. Carrick and Fl;etcher on their day can boss any midfield. Parker is decent but would take Fletcher. Arsenal have Song, Rosicky and Ramsey. If ours was so poor as a lot make out why do we keep winning trophies? The sum of the parts and all that. Scholes didnt feature THAT much the last two seasons. Cleverley and Ando outshone Citys at Wembley. Silva aint a central midfielder so they have Toure who is a big brute and that shit cunt Barry. I just don’t buy that our midfield is the weakest of the top 4. Chelsea have Fat Frank, Mikel and Ramirez. The latter is decent but thats all. Meireles is over rated. Anyway its all about opinions mate and thats mine!

  6. redcrab says:

    It’s all very well saying its “time to buy” but the facts remain:

    1./ very few if any decent players are available in the January transfer windows.
    2./ the only way that United can afford a top quality midfielder, a midfielder who would actually improve our squad, is if such a player is nearing the end of his contract and is desperate to sign for us.

  7. King Eric says:

    Giggs12 – Furthermore Barca THAT night at Wembley would have ruined any midfield. I too was there and I actually felt like applauding them off, they were THAT good. Are you telling me they wouldnt over run Parker and Modric or Fat Frank and Ramirez? Or Ramsey and Song? Or Barry and Toure?

    Don’t get me wrong I think in terms of numbers we do need a world class midfielder but I don’t see too many out there . All these lads like Goetze, Cabaye etc aren’t world class. Neither is fucking Modric who i still don’t get the fuss over. Yes he is a neat and tidty little player but even against Villa the other night he was mis placing passes. That Villa performance was the worst i have seen by a Villa side in years. The amount of time Parker and Modric were afforded was a joke.

    We have a truly world class midfielder in the making in Ravel. The best young player I have seen in years. He is ridiculously good. Cannot pick him up. Ghosts all over the place. Both footed. Great finisher. Walks with the ball, lulls players in then BANG he is away with a quick turn of pace. Great seeing him mixing with Vida etc at training. A top player that lad and no mistake.

  8. Berbatov is Jesus says:

    Lads, you heard it hear first, Manchester United to bid for Javi Martinez in January. Not cup tied and adds much needed physicality to the midfield.

  9. Giggs12Gerrard0 says:

    @king eric

    Mate I actually agree on most of your points. Yes I also applauded barca I always say they were as good as I have seen on a football pitch. I take it back about chels but still believe in the centre we are weaker than The others. The issue we have is a pairing we have a great supporting cast but collectively at the moment we are not world class in there. City at Wembley ok we were brilliant but let’s just think back to that 1-6 even Milner looked quality. apart from ando who is to frustrating for me to appreciate him I love the other three but I don’t see a pairing that make us invincible and we are missing what hargreaves provided in 2008, what Keano provided etc. They were different players on their own right but we don’t have the general in the side.

  10. Fred says:

    Berbatov Is Jesus – It’s a nice thought, isn’t it? Unfortunately, signing Martinez would require us to pay the kind of transfer fee and wages that befit a top class player. That rules out any bid from us. It will be interesting to see how he gets on when he signs for City though. :roll:

  11. Giggs12Gerrard0 says:

    To add I happy to see Carrick or fletch with clev.

  12. 90+UntilWeScore says:

    Hopefully Pogba gets game time, pretty sure Fergie won’t buy, Jones is going to play there, and with Gibbo fit, expecting few games for him too.

  13. StatesideAussie says:

    King Eric, belting post, mate, I think you have nailed a couple of issues in one. First, painful though it is, I have to agree that Barcelona were off the planet that night. They had been ordinary earlier in the competition and probably should have been knocked out by The Arse on away goals (but for that sending off of RVP and that dreadfulm miss by that duffer Bendtner). But once they got to Wembley, they were untouchable. You are right, no midfield in the world that could have upended them that night. I can’t even think of a composite midfield from other teams that would have done it.

    But we can’t solve our problems by obsessing about them. We just have to focus on our own game. Which brings us to Ravel. I don’t get to see him of course, just the odd clip here and there. But with all the trouble he’s had, the club would not have kept him around unless he was that special. And therein lies the dilemma, because if we spend big on “celebrity transfers” now, they will only stand in the way of youngsters like this. I’ve posted before about how difficult it is to juggle the timing of the transition from one generation to the next. Nature plays a big part in this — even Sir Alex can not totally coordinate when the sun will set on one career, and when it will rise on another.

    If it was me making the decisions, I’d be prepared to bite the bullet and wait for the youngsters like Ravel, even if that meant a couple of quieter years (so long as we stay in Europe, of course). I wouldn’t spend 30 or 40 million on a midfielder in his prime, a guy who expects to play every week and be an automatic selection for the next five years. I might pick up a few more talented youngsters and throw them in the mox. And I might consider a slightly older player, who has only a few good years left, but only if the price was very attractive (like a free transfer and a reasonable pay packet).

    That’s where I agree with Denton about de Rossi, who will be 29 by the start of next season and, if he hasn’t re-signed with Roma by then, will be available on a free. I am not thinking of him as a long-term “solution”, just someone who would provide some experience, steel and quality for the next few years while these young lads work their way into the first team. But if he’s not available, then I’d just tough it out with what we’ve got.

  14. Giggs12Gerrard0 says:

    @king Eric

    I thought ravel was a forward?

  15. berbatov9 says:

    Javi Martinez…IF SIR ALEX decide to BUY…will completed every blank in United team right now….cheaper option….can play in front of back 4…young…has an eye for goal…he is spaniard,yeahh they can deliver a pass or two…he tall can provide good aerial cover during setpiece…

    and again…AERIAL threat…SETPIECE….how awful our setpiece since past two three years…now we can have someone we could aim to during set pieces IF WE DO BUY…and IF He want to come….

    but then again its the right time to introduce/unleash… pogba…morrison…petruccii…

  16. max says:

    RAVEL. POGBA., TUNNERS, BRADY, PETRUCCI, NORWOOD……….no need to spend. give the kids a chance saf

  17. united.george says:

    Damn, I knew it, that cursed case of cheeseburgeris tendinitis was going to catch up with Ando.

    We probably wont buy anyone unitl May. I think as long as Carrick, Fletcher and Giggs are ok, we can get by.

  18. Fred says:

    Agreed. Besides, what would be the point of buying a replacement for a player who would be back a month later?

  19. WillieRedNut says:

    I’d love a cheeseburger right now.

  20. smartalex says:

    “We’re not as bad as people think at the moment,” said Sir Alex. “I think we’re okay, we’ve got a strong squad.”

    “It’s dead easy to say are you going to buy players, but it’s not easy to buy players for Manchester United – particularly in January, and I don’t see anyone really who that can make us a better team from the players who are possibly available. I could choose two or three players that I’d like to have at this club, but they’re not available so there’s no point going there.

    “Ryan Giggs gives you experience, of course, and Michael Carrick’s form in the last two games has been outstanding. He had a little problem with his Achilles earlier in the season but he’s got over that now. Darren Fletcher, given the right preparation, is always a very good player for us and getting Tom Cleverley back would be a bonus.”

    “It’s easy to buy a player, but buying the right player is more difficult. We don’t have a scattergun approach to signing players. We want to buy someone who we think will work. We’ve got a great scouting department, that’s been proven over the years in terms of identifying and assessing players. It’s an ongoing process and sometimes it takes two years to find someone.”

  21. StatesideAussie says:

    SmartAlex? How long have you been back?

  22. Unitedinwords says:

    We won’t be buying anyone of note in January. We all need to remember the squad rules too. We can’t just buy a player over 21 because two registered players are injured. It doesn’t work like that anymore. We would need to move Gibson or others on to create space, then try and do a deal. Better to work on the summer deals now.

  23. King Eric says:

    Giggs 12. No mate Ravel is a midfielder. A word I hate but an “attacking“one.

  24. Paul Parker says:

    Quick observation – We were battered pillar to post by Barcelona when Scholes scored THAT goal. Yeah we won, but only due to a moment of genius. Other than the Prince, and a brilliant display by Brown, we were FUCKING BATTERED in the footballing stakes afraid to say. After successfully parking the bus over two ties, we’ve since been battered 5-1 in back to back finals, and we can’t attribute that to Messi alone. Indeed, as I remember it the whole Barca team made us look average. Even when we won possession we just looked likely to concede. Needless to say it was very painful viewing, and reminds me of a fat Ricky Hatton being toyed with and knocked the fuck out by Pretty Boy. DIfferent class.

    Having said that, since the days of Cole and Yorke the ONLY time in recent memory we’ve looked anything like matching Barcelona blow for blow was with Anderson and Cleverley. Bury your heads all you want, but thats the only time since 98 we’ve played them without being A) battered, or B) parking the bus. True it was a friendly, but it came months after the final and anybody who watched saw it wasn’t very friendly at all. Also, even though Messi didn’t play, Inesta, Villa, Valdes, Busquets, Abidal and everybody else did.

    Bottom line – imo of course – the best football I’ve seen this season thus far was with a midfield of Anderson and Cleverley. They produced our best football v Barca, v City and v Arsenal, and to be blunt we are tying to get back to the standard they set for midfield, are we not??? Yes we conceded goals with the young pairing, but we also looked more likely to score than we do now, so having said that you won’t catch me “being happy” one of those two young players is out, FFS. Nothing to do with favourites, just cold hard facts. They have been out best midfield thus far and thats by some fucking distance as well.

    Thing is, when Ando and Cleverley play well together, Tom gets the praise, and when Ando and Fletcher put in an average performance, Ando gets the blame. Thats what you call Schadenfraude, and all these fans and supporters happy about Anderson’s injury are probably the first to scream blue murder when another player fleeces the game for all its worth.Haven’t bothered to read all the comments on this one, but im sure you’d be forgiven for thinking half the faithful are the real mercenary cunts – who wants to read people celebrate our own player being injured?

    Funnily enough, (and against the grain it seems) I wish Anderson a speedy recovery. No he hasn’t performed in every single game this season, but starting with the Charity Shield, or the Barca friendly, we have looked our most creative with him and Cleverley in midfield, and thats a fact.

  25. Paul Parker says:

    Quick observation – We were battered pillar to post by Barcelona when Scholes scored THAT goal. Yeah we won, but only due to a moment of genius. Other than the Prince, and a brilliant display by Brown, we were FUCKING BATTERED in the footballing stakes afraid to say. After successfully parking the bus over two ties, we’ve since been battered 5-1 in back to back finals, and we can’t attribute that to Messi alone. Indeed, as I remember it the whole Barca team made us look average. Even when we won possession we just looked likely to concede. Needless to say it was very painful viewing, and reminds me of a fat Ricky Hatton being toyed with and knocked the fuck out by Pretty Boy. DIfferent class.

    Having said that, since the days of Cole and Yorke the ONLY time in recent memory we’ve looked anything like matching Barcelona blow for blow was with Anderson and Cleverley. Bury your heads all you want, but thats the only time since 98 we’ve played them without being A) battered, or B) parking the bus. True it was a friendly, but it came months after the final and anybody who watched saw it wasn’t very friendly at all. Also, even though Messi didn’t play, Inesta, Villa, Valdes, Busquets, Abidal and everybody else did.

    Bottom line – imo of course – the best football I’ve seen this season thus far was with a midfield of Anderson and Cleverley. They produced our best football v Barca, v City and v Arsenal, and to be blunt we are tying to get back to the standard they set for midfield, are we not??? Yes we conceded goals with the young pairing, but we also looked more likely to score than we do now, so having said that you won’t catch me “being happy” one of those two young players is out, FFS. Nothing to do with favourites, just cold hard facts. They have been out best midfield thus far and thats by some fucking distance as well.

    Thing is, when Ando and Cleverley play well together, Tom gets the praise, and when Ando and Fletcher put in an average performance, Ando gets the blame. Thats what you call Schadenfraude, and all these fans and supporters happy about Anderson’s injury are probably the first to scream blue murder when another player fleeces the game for all its worth.Haven’t bothered to read all the comments on this one, but im sure you’d be forgiven for thinking half the faithful are the real mercenary cunts – who wants to read people celebrate our own player being injured?

    Funnily enough, (and against the grain it seems) I wish Anderson a speedy recovery. No he hasn’t performed in every single game this season, but starting with the Charity Shield, or the Barca friendly, we have looked our most creative with him and Cleverley in midfield, and thats a fact.

  26. Fred DiBiase says:

    Great post PP. I will say this though – days after we beat Barca 2-1 in that friendly, a similarly strong Barca side were trounced 4-1 by Chivas of Guadalajara. MOTWYW.

  27. Unitedinwords says:

    Guys, what you think to signing Rodwell in the summer? I know there are more creative players like Kagawa, Goetze, Shaqiri etc but we have Anderson, Cleverly and Morrison for that and Rooney of course. I think we need a box to box player who covers yards, tackles etc. Pogba looks good and Tunniclife could begin to feature but Rodwell is better than people think.

  28. smartalex says:

    Unitedinwordsperhapsifyousmokedajointyourthoughtsandwordswouldbespacedout.

    Spellchecker va fangu!

  29. REDBORNEO says:

    Hi Guys, greeting from Indonesia. in my first comment i would to say SAF must give more chance to youth like Pogba,Tunni, Petrucci and Ravel.

  30. lordrt says:

    Lets take out the shopping list: Javi Martinez, Götze, Rodwell, Eriksen, Gaitan… Oh and if could get Modric as well y not…

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