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United to Sign Another Striker

It’s official now. Looks like Gill and Ferguson are a bit bored with such quick activity in the transfer market that they now feel the need to sign someone else to keep the place buzzing with activity. You know, even I’ve been in such situations when I wrapped up my transfer dealings for Bristol City (in Football Manager) in 3 days flat. The rest of the pre-season then becomes an ordeal of emptiness that prompts some more spending just for the heck of it.

Anyway, I am sure that’s not the same with Gill and Fergie. had this to say and while Sky Sports’ headline read: ‘Gill Hints at Striker Move’, the official word seemed more sure about it: ‘Reds Eye Striker Signing’. Anyway here’s an excerpt from the article:

“We have looked at it and we don’t rule out another signing,” Gill told Sky Sports News. “That area is a striker but we will see what happens. We’re not desperate for it but if one came along that Alex felt would improve the squad we’re prepared to do that.”

This was what I would think too. I don’t think they would dive in and scramble in their bid to land any striker just for adding up the numbers. They might have certain strikers in mind and if a good deal comes by they would definitely buy the striker. I am also sure that, going by the way they have played in the market so far, a deal might very well come out of nowhere without giving the media a sniff. I wouldn’t expect them to pay way over the odds for a striker. Remember, although the media has talked up our big spending, a big chunk of the money would come from performances and so on. So we aren’t really losing out if we end up paying more if our new signing helps the team win a cup or a title – that’s good return on an investment. Makes perfect business sense.

The other thing that Gill said in the article would certainly be something that will get a lot of tongues wagging:

“There will be some changes but it would be wrong to comment as to that but I think they are discussions we will have internally,” he added. “We have a got a large squad now, so there should be some people leaving, not many at all.
“There should be some leaving and don’t forget we have some great players coming back who have been on loan. We want competition for places, we are looking to improve the squad and to take it on from last year

The arrival of a striker would see at least one striker (if not two) move away. Lot of people have talked about Heinze’s move but as long as there’s no official word from any of the parties involved, everything is blind and empty talk. Among the strikers, Smith or Solskjaer would be the likely candidates (I have a feeling even Saha might go if a good deal comes by).

There are arguments for each one of them. Lot of fans may have their own favourite striker. Ole remains everyone’s favourite. I saw a comment from a fan that questioned why I thought Ole should leave. Yes, he scored the most crucial goal in United’s recent history. That remains beyond doubt. That was like, umm… 8 years back? Yes, he has scored many more crucial goals as a supersub, is a model professional for the youth in training, is liked by everyone at the club, is a very good finisher. Lot’s of positivity. But he is aging. However hard he might try, he will be limited by his aging legs. He’s had surgery. Last season, if you watched carefully you may have realized that he cannot possibly be expected to start a game and play for more than an hour. You would want your striker to play longer than that. He did score some goals, but you can only expect them to get less and less every season from now. Anything more would be a bonus and it’s not something you can plan for.

Ole will remain a great player for us, and I would like to see him play a more important role among the back room staff in a coaching role when he hangs up his boots. Till then a move to Sunderland might seem possible.

Some arguments can be made for and against Saha and Smith and it will always remain a talking point. Both players might have reasons to feel aggrieved if they are sold. Among other players, especially the youngsters Rossi and Pique will feature more in the news (like they already are) linking them to a host of clubs among the possible departures. Although I wouldn’t want either of them to leave without being given a run out.

In the end, what satisfies me is the desire shown by the management to improve the team. In light of takeovers of other clubs by rich foreign owners, the only thing that can guarantee our club stay afloat and keep pace will be putting the smart money on the right players. The youth system is all well and good. It’s a great feeling to have a youth product go on to become a star for the first team, but until that happens, we have to hope that our acquired starlets come good.



  1. Pingback: » Bids going Up and Up...

  2. Ahmed Bilal

    June 9, 2007 at 12:36 pm

    There are rumbles that United are trailing Renato, but I doubt it.

    If United are going to get a striker they’ll go for experience.

    Klose’s off to Bayern, and United are not going to spend 30m (although I’m sure they have the funds) so a big name signing is out.

    I wonder if United would go for a player like McCarthy 🙂 In other words, a target man.

  3. sam

    June 9, 2007 at 1:41 pm

    I would feel robbed if rossi was sold off without being granted a real chance to prove himself in our first team. He has done what was required of him by the club and has, in my eyes, earnt the right to play in our first team. If he fails, he fails, and can be sold off to the myriad of prospective clubs that are battling for his signature now. Smith has been unlucky, both through injury and postional limitations, but I have always questioned wether he is player that is merely just above average or is united quality. My doubts still remain.

    In saying that i think that if United did manage to purchase a premier striker i would have even higher hopes for this team to not only battle on four fronts, but to win on some of the fronts, much like this year, but taking the next step to once again place manchester united at the forefront of wolrd football in all elements. Something I’m sure that the Glazers would have hoped to achieve upon purchasing United. So lets hope that they are willing to spend their hard earn in order to earn more!

  4. BootifullGame

    June 9, 2007 at 5:43 pm

    I would have thought that a target man is just what Fergie is looking for. Torres, Huntelaar, Berbatov etc all fit the bill. We seem to have an abundance of people who can play the second striker roll so surely if we do buy a striker it will be with that in mind.
    As far as Renato is concerned i would be surprised if Fergie stumped up £20mil on another kid. He could well be tempted to go for a more proven frontman, especially for £20mil.
    Its great when United hold there transfer cards close to their chest but it makes it more difficult to second guess. Im guessing that if Fergie had any English playing players in mind we could well have seen some movement, so im inclined to think (perhaps wishfully) that we might be looking to Spain first. Although, Gill might just want a few moved on before we spend even more.
    Im seeing one more big buy, one more shock. And i dont think the scousers will like it. Call it a gut feeling.

  5. NiKOS

    June 9, 2007 at 6:05 pm

    Remember SAF’s words “we ‘re looking for speed”…So forget the big-man forward.No more “catch the ball tall guy” football for ever.That’s why he sent Ruud away.
    SAF has been searching for a fast playmaker forward for years now and he’s got the best of them,Rooney and if the permition case goes on he ‘ll have Anderson,too.I think that he’s also been searching for a straight-back forward like Henry or Villa.He thought that he could make Saha a wolrd-class forward of this type but the French is a pussy.Even if he had the potential he never managed to reach the United class and attitude.I mean why is Saha so scared?
    I don’t know why but I think Alex knows it and Saha leaves in January or late August. A straight-back forward… Who could it be?

  6. NiKOS

    June 9, 2007 at 6:10 pm

    Forget Berbatov and McCarthy remember me when something new arrives….

  7. BootifullGame

    June 9, 2007 at 6:58 pm

    “catch the ball tall guy” ??

    You need to broaden your footballing horizons if a target man means long ball to you.

    And what is a “straight back forward” ??

    I think you are contradicting yourself a little Nikos.

  8. panks

    June 9, 2007 at 9:45 pm

    i would like torres to come. He is tall so he could be a target man,he is also quick which gives the speed that fergie wants.he can also hold the ball up and bring other players in the game. He’ll certainely improve the squad.As far as leaving the team is concerned,i would like ole to stay.Smith seems the obvious person to go although he has been unlucky with personal opinion is that saha should leave.what do u people think?

  9. samg

    June 9, 2007 at 11:35 pm

    about renato……… he’s not really a striker……. he’s more an attacking midfielder in the kaka mould……… after nani and anderson, do we really need another one of those?? besides, theres a buyout clause of some 30 mil euros……. i dont see us paying that much for someone who hasnt played anywhere in europe.

    i’m a huge giuseppe rossi fan, and i think he’s done more than enough to
    merit a place in the first team…….

  10. C

    June 10, 2007 at 1:13 am

    David Villa

    Sell Saha

  11. Jordok

    June 10, 2007 at 3:49 am

    You have to understand that Utd under the Glazers are building a brand.

    Torres is the missing link up front and would have been at Utd b4 now if he wasn’t holding out for something. He will leave AM this summer I’m just not sure its for Utd.

    No-one else on the market fits the brand.

    In terms of outs Saha seems to have crossed the line so £9M there probably to France. Smith will stay, others something different, fits teh brand. Ole will stay if no-one else comes in, looks like a Rossi for Saha shuffle in the 4 strikers pack, remembereing that WR has a more striking role if Anderson is teh real deal, (Can’t wait for the Copa Americana)

  12. BootifullGame

    June 10, 2007 at 3:16 pm

    Torres is in the mould of the type of player Fergie will be looking for. He fits the description of a target man like you say Panks, but has the flexibility to alternate his position with the like of Rooney, Ronaldo, Nani(Giggs). Good pace and good in the air, he would be good for our squad no doubt. Tevez could do the same thing.
    I think the Renato story is just paper talk. If we do buy again it will be for a striker, as per David Gill, and i cant imagine we need another back up striker, so i expect one more big name. Forget Eto’o, he wont come to the Prem. And Villa probably wont either, not this season anyhoo.
    Rossi will be one of our four or five strikers this year. Expect to see Saha move on. Leaving us with a strike force of something like : Rooney, Rossi, Smith and either Torres/Tevez/Berbs/Huntelaar.
    On top of that you’ll have Ole and Anderson.
    I dont see the point is selling Smith. If you let Saha go you can replace him with Rossi, if you let Smith go, we dont have another physical target man, We will need a striker who is flexible enough to fit our style of play, and that limits the options somewhat.
    roll on the new season.

  13. panks

    June 10, 2007 at 6:19 pm

    you read my mind bootifulgame.i was thinking the same.i think it could be torres or tevez.berba is not going to come.i think darren bent could be a surprise. Huntellar is relatively inexperienced i think.what do u all reckon?

  14. NiKOS

    June 10, 2007 at 11:25 pm

    @bootifull game
    having straight back doesn’t mean you are a targetman or the only thing you can do is receiving the ball in the area and putting it in the net.
    I mentioned Henry and Villa they are both straight back forwards but they can do many more things than scoring.I also put Saha in this category cause he has shown in the 05-06 season that he can pass the ball to target-men such as Ruud.
    Well a straight back striker is usually a 2 yard guy that can control the ball,pass it,can get out of the area withowt losing his shot power and technique,doesn;t use his head as Adriano or Ruud or Koller or Jancker do/did.Got me?
    I can also call Raul a straight back striker.Can you tell me where I’m wrong.?Maybe you can call Raul , Henry , Saha , Villa or even Tevez targetman but they are not . And i also can put Cantona in this category.
    And we SHALL have rossi in the first eleven cause you can’t find players like them which I call STRAIGHT BACK STIKERS/FORWARDS.
    And if you ‘ve compare Ruud and Henry and put them in the same category you’re totally wrong. I mean Ruud-target man Henry-Straight back

  15. NiKOS

    June 10, 2007 at 11:33 pm

    And I know that M.Owen and Etoo
    are targetmen but what I want to say is no more “catch the ball tall or very very very very fast guy”. Right bootifull game? Am I ok with my football horizons? 🙂

  16. NiKOS

    June 10, 2007 at 11:53 pm

    No? you want me to say the stereotypical a targetam scores goals,has a powerful shot and header but he also spreads the defences wide using his movement and he brings other players to the game by using his strength and his technique (that is beιng able to play with back to goal)
    Am I sick enough for u Bootifull game?

  17. Steve

    June 11, 2007 at 2:49 am

    Sick enough?
    Calm down Nikos.
    Thats no clearer to me.
    You seem to be comparing RVN to someone like Torres, Tevez, or even Bebratov, not me. I clearly make the distinction.
    Dont get all shirty because i dont understand your own personal terminology. Straight Back striker, i have never heard of that expression before. and its not one im about to start using either.

  18. NiKOS

    June 11, 2007 at 3:17 am

    Steve have you ever seen rooney or messi or tevez? they bend their back they have their head down.they look the ball much of the time they possess it. But Henry or Raul or Cantona… they were or are something else. All of them the shorties and the more ‘straight-back’ ones have great technical abilities,but the second ones…they’re goal machines. Cantona wasn’t that tall but he had his head up when he got the ball.That’s why he made and scored so many goals.They are creative but they are scorers ,too.Saha is one of them but not world class.
    Then it’s the last category of strikers the big guys or the very explosive guys,who even if they have the technical abilities to pass and create something by giving the ball,they prefer to blast it or place it in the net.They usually blast it in the net.
    So, for me there are three categories of forwards
    1.the very creative forwards (the Rooneys and other ,usually shorties… but Crouch is one of them IMO)
    2. the goal machines(Ruud,Adriano,Owen,Shearer,Drogba,Scheva,Romario ) and
    3. the mix of them,such as Cantona ,Henry, Raul , Saha which I call straight back forwards (bad habits)
    Do you still have any answer? Their main charachteristics is that they do have the technical abilities of the creative forwawrds and the physical attributes of the target-men.But they also have their back straight …Got me they see the spaces and the net. 2in1 wash n go.
    Get as the new Cantona!!!

  19. karl

    June 11, 2007 at 3:01 pm

    I think it is everybody (including Fergie’s) wet dream…”the new Cantona”.
    I just get this funny feeling that we are going to make a bid for Henry.

  20. BootifullGame

    June 11, 2007 at 3:33 pm

    You’re off your head if you think Rooney plays with his head down, or Messi or Tevez. All those players are renowned for their vision. Something that is difficult if you play with your head down.
    I think youre trying to over complicate the problem.
    Rooney/Cantona second striker (creative player)
    Saha/Cole main man…top striker
    We have plenty of second strikers (Rooney, Rossi, Anderson,)
    The only two spearhead strikers we have are Smith and Saha, both different styles, Saha can fit into our three pronged attack with Nani and Ronaldo either side, with Rooney just behind. If we sell Saha or Smith then we need to replace them with another ‘targetman’ not another second striker. Hence the names like Torres, Berbatov, Huntelaar and Tevez being linked. All these players can be described as a target man, (along with Anelka, Gudjonnson etc) with the exception of Tevez i suppose, but they all have the ability to be a more flexibible striker than RVN, who was JUST a striker, not a wide man, not a deep man, not a second man…THE main man…we dont need another RVN, we need someone with more flexibilty.
    If this doesnt clear it up then youre on yr own my man. 🙂

  21. NiKOS

    June 11, 2007 at 4:13 pm

    yes I ‘m on my own. cause you can’t see that Henry and Raul could score as many goals as Ruud did and they can/could assist their teammates as rooney and messi do. You think that by saying I have vision means just this. I described 3 categories , where’s the third one in your post? you mean Rooney and Henry are the same type of players ,ore maybe Henry and Adriano or Ruud are the same type of players?
    And if Rooney and Messi aren’t with their head down when they dribble 1-2 players for 5-6 or 10 times in a game then what the fuck are they doing?They cross their hands , they face the sky and the lord gives them magical powers? You just can’t get it or are you mad?
    I think SAF wants a striker that is both creative and scorer (20 and above)

  22. NiKOS

    June 11, 2007 at 4:17 pm

    and sorry for putting cantona in my very own third category. he was not the wow goal machine. And don’t you really want a striker as Henry that is very very scorer and very very creative? WE ALL DO

  23. karl

    June 11, 2007 at 4:26 pm

    I’m with you Nikos, though I must admit, it doesn’t feel quite right when you compare Henry with “God”

  24. BootifullGame

    June 11, 2007 at 4:39 pm

    Im not going to turn this into a one on one Nikos.
    Im still a little confused by what your trying to say, yes there are clearly different types of strikers around, yes United are apparently looking for a striker and despite your argumentative stance you appear to be arguuing the same point as me, i think.
    Youre just employing your own system of terminology from what i can tell by reading back over all my posts, and yours.
    I made it pefrectly clear in my last opost that RVN was a very different type of striker to someone like Berbatov, Torres, Tevez and yes if you wanna include Henry in there, you can.
    Ive said all this in my posts, read them properly mate. Ive made myself perfectly clear, you seem to be arguuing for arguments sake.

  25. NiKOS

    June 11, 2007 at 5:02 pm

    Now we agree. I have my rules you have your own. We can’t judge a player using different rules. As you can see the thing that we agree that we disagree is a progress. But, why should anyone follow somone else’s rules.Right?
    And maybe next season we will see a revived Rooney who will have the power and the speed (the explosive legs) needed to be a very very scorer and a very very creative forward (he is already).I want him to be the new Henry of the Premier League but still something tells me his legs can’t carry him if he is to play in EVERY GAME.In the other hand,maybe it was his injury before the WC that led him slow why go for a striker when we can hope for Rooney Rossi duet do it for us.
    If the new Henry comes buy him,if not forget em all.Let’s hope MU win in every game and more than one player can reach the 20 limit

  26. Ahmed Bilal

    June 11, 2007 at 5:11 pm

    Rooney will score 30 goals next season.

  27. BootifullGame

    June 11, 2007 at 5:12 pm

    Hear Hear!
    I agree about Rooney. Although it makes me laugh (you too probably) when people say Rooney hasn’t had a good season. 21 goals says otherwise, eh. I suppose his form between has dipped at times, but if thats the case, then i cant wait for us to see the full on Rooney. I would prefer a goal scoring partner for him to take some of the front man pressure though, i think Rooney shows his best when he is a little deeper behind a frontman like Saha (Henry, Torres whoever :)).
    I REALLY hope Rossi does get a chance, whether as a striker or even playing deeper. I could see Rossi playing a kind of Scholes role, maybe thats just me and my fantasy football mind at work.
    Bring on the Charity Shield i say.

  28. NiKOS

    June 11, 2007 at 5:51 pm

    In terms of consistency he had a bad season.2 goals now-long term silence-boom! he scores again. It’s all about gashed legs,tired mind and misty eyes. Come on the kid is exhausted ! (clear english articulation when you read it please)After all, he ‘ll be a red for years to come . Even if it’s not the next season it will be the 08-09 season.
    As for Rossi we will all come out with the WOW faces after his first ten games.He s got THE INSTINCT and marvellous technic . I can’t talk about his off the ball movement cause haven’t seen a whole 45-90 minutes but what the hell?he is SAF’s choice, that must be on his standards.Rossi Rossi Man United!

  29. Shyam

    June 11, 2007 at 6:41 pm

    Bring on Torres…Torres + Rooney will provide the goals to go with all trickery provided by Ronaldo,Nani,Giggs,Anderson…ONE UNITED

  30. karl

    June 11, 2007 at 8:03 pm

    If Torres comes, Rossi will definately leave.
    I would rather give Rossi a chance and save lots of money. Imagine the Rooney, Ronaldo, Rossi strike force takes off. Can you imagine the publicity / marketing that will accompany the 3R’s?

  31. BootifullGame

    June 11, 2007 at 8:12 pm

    I think if Torres comes it will mean the end of Saha.
    Rooney, Torres, Rossi, Smith as the four strikers. That would be ok for me. As well as the experience of Ole and the prospect of Anderson developing well.
    Not sure how likely it is, if not Torres then someone of that ilk. There are a few players at the moment that could do a job for us i think.

  32. karl

    June 11, 2007 at 8:23 pm

    How can Rossi progress if a young (and expensive) Torres and a young (and expensive) Rooney stands in his way of establishing himself as a first-team starter. Either Torres will outshine Rossi or Rossi will outshine Torres. The latter will be bad for business because of the money involved.

  33. spizzy

    June 12, 2007 at 1:44 pm

    Can’t believe we are having this Torres talk.He is overrated and keeps saying how he’s not leaving AM.i think Berbatov is the right fit but then who im i yo say,except for hargrieves every other signing caught me by surprise,not so much nani but the way the deal was handled.Whoever is making this Deals must be new

  34. Dash

    June 13, 2007 at 12:01 pm

    My take on this is that we have Rossi who is ripe to get a first team chance. If there is risk involved in blooding him there is also risk involved in getting a new striker in (considerably more knowing the transfer fees). I would therefore like to retain the current bunch of strikers rotating between Saha and Rossi as the frontmen and if needed go another striker in the winter or next year.

    However, last few seasons have proved that a catch up game in the latter part of season is a huge challenge so in case Rossi/Saha don’t work out we might be looking a *failed* season again. And with the investment this summer bordering on 50 mill GBP, I doubt if that is an option. My guess therefore is that Gill/SAF would probably go for another striker but none of the big names (transfer fees > 15 mill GBP). Torres I heard was available for that amount and would therefore be the most likely candidate IMO.

  35. Jonas Grønning

    June 30, 2007 at 10:41 am

    If I where Sir Alex, I would buy a new striker, and it would be Roque Santa Cruz, he is an very good form, and he can score a lot of goals. And United can get him very cheap!

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