A refurbishment seems evident at Old Trafford, despite the unawareness of the person in charge. The Red Devils lost their winning streak under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer for the first time, against Thomas Tuchel’s Paris Saint-Germain.
The Parisians took a crucial 2-0 away goal aggregate lead from the first leg at Old Trafford for the UCL Round of 16. This adds pressure upon the Red Devils squad, who has got a tight schedule of fixtures, before facing PSG again for the second leg on the 6th of March at the Stade Parc des Princes.
On 19th of February, United will be travelling to West London to face Chelsea for the 5th round of the FA Cup, at Stamford Bridge.
Although, the Red Devils have been in excellent form since the arrival of the legendary super-sub, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, as their interim manager, they aren’t simply resting on their laurels.
Following the 0-2 loss against Paris Saint-Germain, it is claimed that executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward understands the need to invest on the team’s arsenal, despite its resurrection under the Norwegian.
The defeat witnessed forwards Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial subbed off due to muscle injuries. It also showcased how the Red Devils need to rework on their defense, meanwhile adding one more forward to their roster.
The question regarding Solskjaer’s tenure is yet to be answered. Whether the Norwegian is going to take the club forward on a permanent basis into the next season or a permanent substitute will be found, is still unknown.
Meanwhile, the top four transfer targets under United’s radar seem to be confirmed. So who are these top four targets?
The Red Devils Top Transfer Targets:
1. Douglas Costa (Juventus F.C.)
United’s struggle without Lingard and Martial was visible in the 2nd half of the Champions League match against PSG. This certainly showcased their need for one more forward (at least).
The Brazilian, who is under a Juventus contract seems to be a sensible target, starting from his £52 million price tag, to his mesmerising skills. As we saw in the last fixture, pace is fundamental.
⚡️ The Flash ⚡️#DouglasCosta – Juventus' Skills & Goals
★ CHJ ★ pic.twitter.com/OYgU8WpVlB
— CHJ (@CHJ1897) January 31, 2019
Getting a striker with a price tag like £52million is a bargain. Considering his experience in top European football fixtures and leagues, and his Brazilian flair, it will be a steal deal for the Red Devils.
2. Kalidou Koulibaly (S.S.C. Napoli)
A significant part of Carlo Ancelotti’s arsenal at Napoli, the Senegalese is into his fifth season in Italy, as he continues to dominate Serie A strikers with his imperious displays in the Gli Azzuri jersey.
The defender has been on many sensational headlines, regarding his demands by top European clubs. The Senegalese has got all the characteristics needed of a modern ball-playing defender.
It’s no surprise that the Old Trafford hierarchy are going for him as well. If the board is able to cough up the £90 million fee required to sign him, then the bulldozer can finally end up in North West England.
3. Lucas Hernandez (Club Atlético de Madrid)
Also under Bayern Munich’s radar, the French full-back, who won the FIFA World Cup 2018 with the Les Bleus, was almost on the verge of a £75 million move, thanks to a release clause. Now, Manchester United may swoop to beat the Germans in the summer, as the deal was unsuccessful.
The Roji-Blanco can play as a centre-back too, making him a valuable asset to the Red Devils. While his time under Argentine manager Diego Simeone, Lucas has become an astute player, which could make him perfect for the Premier League.
4. Nikola Milenkovic (ACF Fiorentina)
As Ashley Young is crawling in age and Antonio Valencia on the verge of an exit from the club, a full back is required to cover the right flank, along with Diogo Dalot.
Just like Koulibaly, the Serbian has excelled in Serie A with Fiorentina. Milenković can play at both right-back and centre-back, making him a top transfer target.
It might seem that the Red Devils are keen. His record of poor discipline can however cause an issue in the Premier League. So, scouts have got a huge task as due diligence before a deal is finalised.
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Although, these transfer targets are under the radar of various top clubs in Europe, United will ensure their best to secure these players, with a mutually pleasing contract and deal with the respective clubs and targeted players.
The board at Old Trafford has got a huge task to deliver. Considering their unsatisfactory performance during the last January winter transfer market, the Red Devils certainly need to buck up to take them to the heights they were at.
Meanwhile, as the pressure adds upon the board officials, a lot depends on the current and targeted foreign players and the final call for manager on a permanent basis. Also, the finance invested this time is expected to be huge (and can break some records).
As many European clubs have opened their gates, for these demanded players, it’d be interesting to watch United’s take on the same. The fate of next season can witness a significant change with the arrival of these players at Old Trafford.
Now, it depends on the Old Trafford based hierarchy regarding their action. When and how will they sign these players?
Is it going to be mutual deal with player swaps? Will some players walk through the exit gates in the name of a loan move?
So many questions with answers based on quick performance of negotiation. The arrival of these players can possibly affect the Red Devils line-up. In my viewpoint: