As always, the summer transfer window involves a lot of speculation, and a large amount of conjecture concerning the potential transfer of players, and so far this summer has been no different with United seemingly being favourites to sign every player in the world.
Prior to the dismissal of David Moyes, United were linked with a series of players, namely; Marco Reus, Toni Kroos, Ezequial Garay, Cesc Fabregas and Luke Shaw. Since the appointment of Louis Van Gaal, the targets appear to have changed dramatically with only Luke Shaw seemingly interesting the new manager.
This is understandable, with Van Gaal being someone who is very strong minded, with an ideology of how the game should be played and therefore wanting only players he believes can carry out his instructions.
Potential Arrivals Under Van Gaal
A very promising prospect, who has come through the highly productive Southampton Youth Academy. He had an excellent 2013/14season, and with him still only being 18, he could be the first choice left back at the club for over 10 years. He would appear to be an excellent signing, especially with Evra being kept at the club to offer expertise to Shaw, and experienced cover in this department. Overall, he would be an excellent signing, and is perhaps looking the most likely of any potential arrivals at this time.
Someone who Van Gaal obviously thinks highly of, withhim being selected in the Netherlands’ World Cup squad, and it would seem he has a large amount of potential. He has been compared to Xavi by many, due to his metronomic passing; however at this point, those comparisons seem premature. He is yet to prove himself at a high standard, although the World Cup would be the perfect platform for him to announce himself. Clasie would certainly be a risk, but with a low transfer fee, it may be a risk worth taking.
It would appear Depay is a player of vast potential, with him seemingly having everything required to succeed at the top level. He is a quick, tricky winger, who likes cutting inside and releasing his fearsome shot. Comparisons have been drawn between him and Cristiano Ronaldo; however once again these appear premature. He would be an exciting addition to the squad, with his ability to beat a man being something United have missed from their wingers at times over the last few years. Once again, he would be a risk due to him being an unproven 20 year old, but he would certainly offer some excitement.
Strootman is a player who United have been linked with for a number of years. He is a box-to-box midfielder, who is also very comfortable on the ball, and most importantly a leader. This made him the perfect option last summer considering his availability, and the fact he is what United have needed for years. It is unlikely we willsign him this summer due to his injury which will keep him out until a few months in to the new season. If we did sign him, it would be for a lot more than we could have paid for him last summer; however it seems more feasible that Strootman would be a January addition.
McCarthy had an impressive first season with Everton, with him exceeding expectations after his arrival from Wigan. He offers good energy and an ability to break up play, coupled with smart use of the ball. His attributes are not dissimilar to those of the much maligned Tom Cleverley, meaning he may not be the player which we need. He would most likely come with an inflated price tag, as is often the case with transfers between English clubs, therefore it would appear there are better options out there for United.
A player of undoubted class, who would be an excellentacquisition. He is a capable defender, despite the odd lapse, who is also very comfortable on the ball, and he starts many attacks for his current club, Dortmund. He would undoubtedly be a superb purchase for United, whether it is a realistic prospect is another thing.
Schweinsteiger is the kind of player United have been crying out for ever since the departure of Roy Keane in 2005. He is a classy box-to-box midfielder, with a good passing range, and an eye for goal, but most importantly, he is a leader on the pitch. There are rumours that Guardiola wants to get rid of him, as he slows their play down, and if this is the case, then United should go all out to buy him. At the moment, it would appear to be a long shot, but should it come to fruition, then he would be the perfect signing for United.
Pogba represents the most embarrassing potential signing of the summer. He is a player of great potential, and would be the perfect fit for the kind of midfielder which United need. On the other hand, it would be poor business to buy someone back, forareported £60 million, who had been let go on a free two years ago. It is still unlikely that he would leave Juventus, and furthermore that he would come back to United, he left under a cloud, and had a public argument with Fergie, meaning that a deal would be unlikely.
Potential Departures Under Van Gaal
His future looked bleak under Moyes, as he endured a miserableseason, which was disrupted by injury. He has, however, proven himself in the past to be an accomplished performer, and it would be a mistake to let him go. He fits the criteria for a full back under Van Gaal, with him being fully committed, and also good going forward. As a result, he should be kept this summer at least, and get another chance to prove himself.
He is a decent player, but nothing more. He will be a good player for a mid-table Premiership team, but is not United class. He should be sold to generate funds.
He is probably the only winger in the United squad capable of turning a match, or coming up with a moment of genius. He has obvious qualities, but he has been very poor for the last few seasons, and it is likely that if Moyes was still in charge, then he would be sold. His attacking flair may appeal to Van Gaal, equally his laziness in defence may infuriate him. I believe he will be given a chance, but this will most likely be his last one, and he must prove himself.
Was shipped out on loan to Fiorentina for the second half of the 2013/14 season, and he failed to set the world alight whilst he was there. He made a big impression when he first came, however he has had many fitness issues, and he will never fulfil his potential. As a result, he should be sold to bring in more money to spend on strengthening the squad.
He has been weighed down heavily by his price tag. He proved to be a handful at Everton, but he has failed to show much ability in a deeper role at United. He may still prove to be a useful squad player, but will never be a regular starter, meaning if a £15 million offer came in, United may cut their losses and sell him.
He had a very difficult season with first the media, andthen some of his own fans turning on him, despite being a youth team product. He does have potential, but needs to add more to his game, which would most likely be goals. He may however, fit what Van Gaal wants, with him having a lot of energy, and the ability to retain the ball. It appears likely that Cleverley will be kept, and given another chance to prove his worth.
He was bought on the back of his performances for Aston Villa, but he has never replicated that for at United. The fans have never took to him, and if a good transfer fee could be gained from his sale, then it would be a good move to cash in, and also free up money on the wage bill.
Any calls for him to be sold are extremely premature. He is not yet the finished article, but he does have obvious qualities, and should be persevered with.
It would be a shame to see him go, but he deserves toget the first team football that he craves. He will no doubt score 20 plus goals a season if he plays regularly, however it seems unlikely that he will ever be first choice at United. If he is sold, a fee of £15 million or more should be brought in, but he would be missed by United fans.
Danny Welbeck: It would be very disappointing if Welbeck were to be sold. He comes from Manchester, and has been a fan of the club all of hislife, yet certain supporters get on his back due to his purported inability to finish. He has obvious qualities, such as his pace and direct running, but he does need to add more goals to his game. Under Van Gaal, it is unlikely he will get sold this summer, however if he fails to play regularly from the start, then he will seek to leave in the near future.
Hopefully this summer does not end up like last years, when we waited all summer to see what was left at the end, then panic bought a player which would not fit in to our playing style. For this to be a successful transfer window for United, they require a young left back, ideally Shaw, a centre back, two central midfielders and a quick winger. At this point that seems optimistic, however in order for United to challenge for trophies again next year that is what is required. The makeup of the squad will most likely change this summer, hopefully some of the less effective squad players will leave, and some players will be brought up from the under 21s, these coupled with some exciting signings and Van Gaal should have a better squad to work with. Overall, change is required at United this summer, and hopefully the required players are brought in.