It’s not been a dream start to the new campaign for Manchester United by any stretch of the imagination, but there’s plenty of time to make amends.
Much of United’s on-field struggle has its roots in the Glazers’ perennial toying with the club, their reluctance to let new people with fresh ideas join the Red Devils and constant interference in the transfer market.
Especially when we remind ourselves that since the departure of Sir Alex Ferguson, Man U have spent more than £1.4 billion on players. So, unless the Red Devils get lucky playing online casino slots, they’re going to need a plan B to keep the proverbial ball rolling.
Tying Erik ten Hag’s hands in the summer transfer window has proved an epic mistake, as evidenced by the team’s worst Premier League side in almost 40 years.
However, the Dutchman is fighting tooth and nail to turn Man Utd’s fortunes around despite working with the squad depleted by injuries and marred by spoiled brats such as Antony and Jadon Sancho.
The time has come for the latter to drop the curtain on his dreadful spell at Old Trafford as after tarnishing his relationship with the manager, the Englishman is ready to pack his bags in January.
But he won’t be the only one. The upcoming transfer window will be a perfect opportunity to offload the deadwood and release the burden off a ballooning wage bill.
Donny van de Beek’s long-standing struggles will probably halt once the January session opens for business, with ex-Real Madrid duo Casemiro and Raphael Varane expected to seek new homes as well.
Following an impressive maiden Premier League campaign, the Brazilian midfielder has tumbled down the pecking order, while the French defender has fallen behind Harry Maguire, which speaks volumes.
If Man Utd can cash in on their unsettled stars, ten Hag could raise enough funds to reinforce three crucial positions ahead of the second half of the season.
Varane’s fall from grace and Lisandro Martinez’s proneness to injuries have left United short of options at the back, leaving ten Hag with the second-string centre-back pairing for most of the early campaign.
Maguire’s return to the starting XI has made Man Utd fans sick, even though the Englishman has not disappointed. Victor Lindelof has exceeded expectations, but it’s not enough.
United’s gamble with Jonny Evans’ return to the Theatre of Dreams has been an unmitigated disaster, and it’s time to rectify past mistakes.
According to the Daily Mail, the Red Devils have earmarked Nice star Jean-Clair Todibo as a fitting replacement for out-of-favour Varane.
Following a nightmarish stint at Barcelona, the 23-year-old has established himself as one of the best defenders in Ligue 1.
Partnered with veteran ace Dante, Todibo has forged the most formidable defensive line-up in Europe’s top-five leagues this season, with Nice conceding just four goals in 12 matches.
Casemiro’s potential exit would make room for a new deep-lying playmaker. Even if he stays, Man Utd would be wise to invest in a new defensive midfielder.
Sofyan Amrabat’s late summer arrival from Fiorentina has not gone according to plan. Often deployed out of position, the Moroccan has experienced a rough patch during his early days at Old Trafford.
Christian Eriksen spends more time on the sidelines than on the pitch, while Mason Mount is still adjusting to a new role upon his mega-money transfer from Chelsea.
With no intention to disrespect his qualities, Scott McTominay’s rise in the pecking order perhaps best illustrates the depth of the crisis.
As per Calciomercato, Juventus’ Adrien Rabiot could be a person of interest again this winter. The Red Devils are long-term admirers of the former Paris Saint-Germain midfielder.
Since he’s about to enter the final six months of his contract in Turin, Man Utd could snap him up on a bargain deal.
Sancho’s sale won’t solve the problem in the front third. It could improve morale in the dressing room, but it won’t change the fact United desperately need an industrious winger.
Marcus Rashford has been up the creek without a paddle after a brilliant 2022/23 campaign, while Antony is in contention for one of the worst pieces of business in the club’s modern history.
A one-dimensional forward, unable to score goals and create chances, the Brazilian has proved useless since joining the team from Ajax last summer.
Despite his undeniable talent, Alejandro Garnacho is still green.
All that paints a bleak picture of the attacking department.
Since the war chest is half empty unless Sancho hits the road, United must find a cost-effective signing to bolster ten Hag’s attacking options.
Brentford’s Bryan Mbeumo would be a dream acquisition, but a deal doesn’t seem feasible midway through the season.
A player of his characteristics but with a lower price tag should be among Man Utd’s priorities this winter.