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Do United really need Lewandowski?

1With Christmas done and dusted, the January transfer window is less than a week away, meaning that tabloids across the country are starting to flex their muscles in a bid to produce a different rumour every day.

As far as United are concerned, Sir Alex has made clear he doesn’t intend to strengthen the team in January but, according to some of today’s newspapers, Fergie is close to finalise a deal to bring Borussia Dortmund striker Robert Lewandowski to Old Trafford next year, in a deal worth around £18m.

The Mirror, the Daily Mail and the popular German newspaper Bild report that Lewandowski will be offered a deal worth £4.1m over five years.

The Polish international has been on United’s radar for quite sometime now, and fits all the requirements. At 24, he’s still relatively young, has a price tag under the £20m roof and, crucially, he’s not a midfielder. Lewandowski is a proven goalscorer, as he demonstrated domestically and in Europe over the last few years – 40 goals in the last two seasons, 16 in 26 games in all competitions so far this year – but is he really the best way for United to invest almost £20m?

With the arrival of Lewandowski, United would find themselves with an abundance of strikers and Ferguson would have a very complicated task in trying to accomodate them all – or at least to guarantee them enough time on the pitch – without overly disrupting the shape of the team.

Robin Van Persie’s impact since signing from Arsenal has been such that he’s now crucial influence to the team, while Wayne Rooney and Javier Hernandez have developed an excellent understanding with the Dutchman and it’s hard to see any of them leaving the club. Rooney is being touted as a future captain in some quarters, while Hernandez is the closest United have ever come to replace Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

That leaves Danny Welbeck as the more likely to be casted out of the club, unless Ferguson plans to utilise the striker out wide more regularly – a position that Welbeck doesn’t like and one in which he has never thrived.

The outcome of the season is likely to determine strategies in next summer’s transfer market but, thankfully, it doesn’t look like we’ll be burdened with a new midfielder any time soon. Happy belated Christmas, then.


Dan (@MUFC_dan87)




  1. Stephen

    December 27, 2012 at 10:52 am

    We will never ever sign a midfield player……………………. 😡
    He is a great striker but scoring goals isn’t an issue, another centre back and at least one centre mid are essential.

  2. realist

    December 27, 2012 at 12:12 pm

    Not quite sure there is such a desperation to buy a centre midfielder myself, outside of some peoples homes at least, and thankfully that does not include the bosses.
    Rvp only has a few years left at his peak, rooney is now playing in a deeper role and may make this a permanent move in the near future. Wellbeck is still young, and has lots of time and comfort, due to our quality in that position, to improve. Hernandez for me, is a supersub, and will probably never be a first choice striker at our club.
    The boss has always been a forward thinker, just in case you had not noticed with the numerous winning teams he has knitted together spanning over 3 centuries, and he clearly rates Lewandowski as the sort of player and character that we could do with at our club going forward.
    In my opinion the position we really need a player in as a matter of some urgency is left wing, as shown by the legend that is Giggs, still being needed to do a shift there this last game versus Newcastle. Although he played very well indeed and may have silenced a few, (but not a lot no doubt) we should have another natural left footer in place to replace him by now.
    With Giggs, Scholes, Carrick, Fletcher, Anderson, Cleverly, Kagawa, Powell, and also Rooney,(thats 9 players) able to play a central role of either 2 or 3 players depending on formation i really dont see how another is such a desperation for people.
    Our reserve team captain Davide Petrucci also looks a player.

    • Kekonius

      December 27, 2012 at 1:41 pm

      @realist: ceunturies? 300 years of mangement is well good!

    • Dan

      December 27, 2012 at 1:56 pm

      @realist: Giggs and Scholes are no longer able to play in midfield, unfortunately we’ve seen it over and over again this year. Rooney isn’t as effective in midfield and Powell is either considered too raw or not good enough yet. People are obviously entitled to their opinions – which I respect btw – but to me whoever denies that we need a midfielder sounds a bit out of touch with reality.

  3. Moscow

    December 27, 2012 at 1:36 pm

    If we were going to steal another Dortmund player, I’d go for Hummels or Gundogan. Lewandowski wouldn’t be a disaster signing, Rooney never plays up front anymore and Welbeck has 1 goal in 20 appearances. In fact, I don’t know how Welbeck is still a United player.

  4. Stephen

    December 27, 2012 at 2:08 pm

    The Pole is a cracking player, but not a need.
    The midfield have been ignored for far too long. Carrick is the only player who could probably walk into many top 4 sides. Cleverley is good but very in and out and Anderson is a dead loss.
    Ok buy Lewandowski sell Welbeck for the same money, but use the kitty available for the midfield and defence.

  5. Traverse

    December 27, 2012 at 2:33 pm

    RVP, Rooney, Welbeck, Hernandez with Henriquez still to come through. Why the fuck would we waste £18mil on a striker? To fill the hole left by the soon to be departing Macheda?

    I’d rather we bought a winger. In CM Carrick, Cleverley, Anderson, Kagawa should be fighting out for those 2 places Giggs and Scholes should retire and leave the bit part roles to up and comers like Powell and Tunicliffe.

    Against Newcastle we didn’t have Young, so we didn’t have a left wing at all. Wilfried Zaha or Thomas Ince are good young relatively cheap options who would sit on our bench. If we want to upgrade on Young then break the bank for Bale.

    I’m most worried about our goalkeeping position to be honest. I’m a big supporter of De Gea, and have spent a long time defending him against United fans and outsiders. Yeah the press made the most out of his mistakes last season while letting Hart get away with worse, but the last two games have really shown his inability to adapt to our game.

    Twice in 2 games he’s pushed a ball on to the feet of an attacker that he could have caught or turned behind. We’re lucky that everyone else is imploding and we have the best striking options in the league, otherwise we could be looking up at 4th.

    • Opti

      December 27, 2012 at 4:59 pm

      @Traverse: I heard Tom Ince is signing for Liverpool. Any word?

  6. Stephen

    December 27, 2012 at 3:42 pm

    Hart has had a very poor season, he seems to get away with so many mistakes while De Gea are highlighted.
    The Spainard is a concern though, our defence are suffering and I feel a keeper who is clearly still nervous isn’t helping.

  7. Opti

    December 27, 2012 at 5:06 pm

    I don’t like this signing. Why? Well, for one, it will spell the end for Chicharito and Hernandez, because Fergie loves Welbeck. Chicharito was an investment into Mexican market and he is now ready to be sold to highest bidder (Madrid? Barca? PSG?). If young Hernandez was doing well in training or showcasing glimpses of being special, surely Fergie would at least use him on bench and at worst not sign another top-class striker striker.

    Furthermore, why would he tie Welbeck up on a long-term contract only to sell him a year later? This one smells like the end of Chicharito, not Welbeck. 🙁 🙁 🙁

    • Opti

      December 28, 2012 at 6:47 pm

      @Opti: I meant “Chicharito and Henriquez”

  8. One United

    December 27, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    On paper, ths signing of Robert Lewandowski makes no sense what so ever. What it definitely signifies is the permanent change to Wayne Rooneys role for Manchester United. One thing for sure is his days as a striker and possible attacking midfielder are numbered. With Lewandowski added, you would have to play RVP behind him..its definitely mouthwatering and there will be goals. If we are all honest Lewandowski is a far superior player to Hernandez AND is a couple of months younger. I wish hernandez would simply accept his role as a super sub. He could be legendary!
    Robin is pushing 30s door down and as spectacular as he’s performing now, with age he’s bound to decline. As I stated earlier, its likely to mean Rooney dropping into center/box to box midfield permanently. This might not necessarily be a bad thing after all we are desperate for a midfielder and Rooney has all the attributes (Long range shooting ability, timing in the box, tackling, work rate, long range passing, the odd through ball, strength) What wazza needs is consistency in one position and he’ll thrive. In the past he’s played left, right, center and behind. This could finally be his permanent position for the next 10 years. It also leaves Shingi Kagawa to rivaL Robin for the spot behind Lewandowski. Bearing in mind the Dutchmans injury record and age, this move might necessarily be bad AS it might end up even prolonging his career with us not to mention the advantage of rekindling Kagawas proven partnership with Lewandowski.
    I watched RVP play behind Chicharito against Newcastle and he was awesome, he did the tracking back, held the ball up, he brought the wingers into play, he linked up well with the midfielders as well as Chicharito, hardly lost possession and he grabbed a goal. I thought it was his best game for us yet. Definitely his most complete performance! Hes gone on record in the past to say he prefers that role but because he has gotten so much joy over the last couple of seasons he has accepted the no9 role.
    Now partner Carrick with the dyansim of wazza, flanked by nani and vally with Robin just behing Robert, Bob might just be your Uncle.. As I said Rooney just needs to played consistently in one position. He will definitely add goals from midfield. I have stated in the past that stranger players have been converted successfully, Invariably they just need to stick at it.

    What say y’all?

  9. One United

    December 27, 2012 at 5:50 pm

    For the record, I would love the option.. and if nani really is leaving , bring in Goetze and Ozil.. Apparently the latter is unhappy in Real and the bonus is the fact that he is lefft footed.. both might be left footed actually

  10. Muadh

    December 27, 2012 at 7:07 pm

    He is a great striker, but not needed. I would have loved seeing him join us last year, it’s too late now. Unless Fergie is thinking of showing Welbeck the exit door.

    I have no idea how we could not notice that we have a huge problem in midfield. We need a creative midfielder DESPERATELY. Ozil (Not happy at Madrid) ,Sneijder (Not happy at Inter) or Gotze (Huge potential), any of those would do the job.

    This was mentioned in the comments – I will keep saying this everyday, there is nothing wrong with De Gea!

  11. Sahal

    December 27, 2012 at 7:38 pm

    I am sure Lewandowski’s agent is fueling these rumours.Dortmund aren’t playing the game with him so he has taken to the press in order to try and get a better deal.He is using United because Fergie WAS interested in him last season,before one little dutchman arrived 😉

    Oh and lay off Welbeck a bit please.He has been played in a position where he can’t do much.On top of that he hasn’t been given a run of games.He’s still young(only just turned 22!) so give him a chance.He gives everything for the club and knows what it means to be a United player.

  12. colver

    December 27, 2012 at 10:05 pm

    Of course we don’t need him. In a few years time when Van Persie starts to fade we may need a new striker if we don’t feel that Hernandez or Welbeck are capable of taking over Van Persie’s mantle. But by that time there may well be an even better candidate available and Lewandowski will be yesterday’s news.

    If we have £20 million to spend we need an experienced central defender to bring a bit of leadership and maturity to our creaking defence and also some quality backup for Carrick as Fletcher sadly is no longer United quality.

  13. colver

    December 27, 2012 at 10:13 pm

    The other things that are clear from the Newcastle game is that Scholes needs to be saved for the bottom feeder teams and Johnny Evans for all his good performances this season is still too easily bullied and does not look like he will ever be world class.

    • Stephen

      December 28, 2012 at 4:54 pm

      @colver: Agreed with Evans, like De Gea he gets bullied. Both need to add balk, Evans will be a very good squad player. We missed a trick when we failed to sign Cahill, he was cheap and local.
      De Gea still makes too many errors to even be considered good enough. I remember the stick Foster took when he made less errors than the Spaniard, maybe he should have changed his passport.
      I think he has ability, but he needs to be more assertive, learn to speak English, gain confidence and stop saving everything with his feet.

  14. John Tring

    December 28, 2012 at 3:03 am

    A good player would improve any team, Utd included. So, yes, RL is welcome. But not at the expense of any good defender or midfielder. Match after match we are showing our incredible weakness in defence and midfield. Below average teams are scoring against us at will. SAF should stop his referee nonsense and look at himself. He bought Young, Jones and De Gea for more than 6om pds in 2011 and promptly lost the title. Agaist N’castle, two were absent and the third played like a schoolboy keeper! And Evans? the less said about him the better. So, come January, SAF should beg, borrow or steal a few decent guys to try and shore things up at defence and midfield. The pretense of “Champs League Tied” players should not worry Utd. Utd woudn’t be involved after Februray and March at best. So try to reclaim the title and gain maximum mileage whily Citeh stutters. We all know what SAF and CO. did with an 8-point lead in April… 😐

  15. The_Philosopher

    December 28, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    The signing of Lewandowski would serve several purposes.

    1) He is cover/replacement for a very critical but aging Robin van Persie.

    2) He takes pressure off of Rooney to play where ever the manager wants to play Rooney.

    3) He is a ready made striker vs Welbeck’s still developing game. Lewandowski is 24 and is therefore more mature than the 22 year old Welbeck. Ferguson is trying to keep the pipeline full. At 24 years of age Lewandowski is the perfect link between the aging van Persie and the still raw Welbeck, King and Henriquez.

    Lewandowski would come in as the second choice striker behind van Persie and ahead of Rooney. Thus solidifying Uniteds claim of having the most lethal offense in Europe.

    Lewandowski is a no.9. He leads the line , he provides an aerial threat and he is a target man for holding up play while the other offensive players get into position.

    Robin van Persie is also a no.9

    Danny Welbeck is a no.9

    Wayne Rooney is a no.10 and more of a utility player than an out and out striker.

    Shinji kagawa is a no.10 more than a midfielder or a wide man.

    And Chicharito is a super-sub.

    Macheda needs to go.

    Looking at things from my understanding of how Ferguson works; our midfield is fine. We have Carrick, Anderson, Cleverley, Fletcher, Powell and the academy boys coming through. So we’re covered in midfield. Fletcher just needs to return to full strength and Anderson needs to stay out of the medical room.

    Our most pressing need is a left winger. A naturally left footed player is our biggest need.

    I am fully behind breaking the bank to get Gareth Bale. I doubt he dreams of United though. I feel like if he were to leave Totenham it would be for greener pastures in Spain. Not in the same league.

    But who knows a few more trophyless seasons and he might start feeling like van Persie did at Arsenal.

    Mourinho and Ronaldo are rumoured to be on their way to United. Imagine that. Lewandowski, Gareth Bale, Jose Mourinho and CR7 himself!

    • Stephen

      December 28, 2012 at 4:58 pm

      @The_Philosopher: Mourinho is doing a great job at Madrid. Drops the best keeper in the World and looses, falls out with everyone at the club, lying 3rd in La Liga and 16 points behind Barca.
      People hang off his every word like love struck puppies but he is currently having mare in Spain and if he weren’t the self proclaimed special one, he would have been sacked by now.
      Fergie is the only true special one.

  16. The_Philosopher

    December 28, 2012 at 2:05 pm

    One United you’re spot on, Rooney will excell in any role he’s given as long as he plays there regularly.

    If anyone needs to move over to make space for Lewandowski I would say its Welbeck.

    I feel the same about Lewandowski as I did about van Persie before we bought him. At the time there were those who felt that van Persie was not necessary because our biggest need was in midfield plus Rooney and Welbeck had formed a decent partnership last season.

    But van Persie came in and proved just how much we needed him.

    Welbeck is just as bellow par now as he was before van Persie was bought so by that logic bringing in Lewandowski will provide the team with just as much of a boost as van Persie did.

    Just a couple months of Lewandowski in a red shirt will change everyone’s mind about whether we need him or not.

  17. The_Philosopher

    December 28, 2012 at 2:06 pm

    We just need to sit tight when it comes to De Gea. He will come good.

  18. The_Philosopher

    December 28, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    In defense we need Smalling to step up now.

    Evans could still be a great player for us. I’m not prepared to write him off just yet.

    Well at least not while Ferguson still believes in him.

    Smalling and Keane/Wooten are the future of our defense I reckon.(Unless we bye someone)

    Jones is too much like David Luiz to me. Maybe best playing right back or defensive midfield.

    Left back needs a new signing as well. Evra is fading. Buttner hasn’t conviced me yet.

    BTW: I would gladly take Ashley Cole and Frank Lampard on a free at the end of the season. (But Giggs and Scholes would have to go before that though)

  19. The_Philosopher

    December 28, 2012 at 2:40 pm

    Rooney needs to be trained now to play in midfield.

    He is our club’s best box-to-box player.

    Why not just make it official?

    He is our club’s best box-to-box player.

    • Stephen

      December 28, 2012 at 4:48 pm

      @The_Philosopher: Rooney is a centre forward not a midfield player.
      He can’t tackle, his feet aren’t quick enough to move the ball. Why do people follow the Fergie mantra, square pegs in round holes because it would be convenient?

    • Moscow

      December 28, 2012 at 7:57 pm

      @The_Philosopher: Rooney is not a box to box player. He is not an attacking midfielder let alone a central midfielder. He is being played deep because his competition is Giggs and Anderson, and because we refuse to sign a midfielder.

      Didn’t he earn the ‘world class’ tag as a striker anyway?

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