So today, this series draws to a close. Again, if you’ve missed our previous articles based on Manchester United’s most likely transfer targets, head on over to the start here.
We wrap things up by delving deep into the forward options Ole Gunnar Solskjaer already has at his disposal, while also looking at some players who could well be added over the next two transfer windows.
Manchester United’s most likely transfer targets (forwards):
The current forward line is both young and has much potential. United obviously have Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial, Daniel James and Mason Greenwood all aged 24 and under.
At times this season, United have looked both vibrant and exciting going forward – especially when attacking the better sides on the counter-attack at speed. The real problem has been the lack of service and creativity behind and alongside them. As mentioned in the midfield piece, James Maddison has been targeted to provide creativity and on-ball quality. At the moment Jesse Lingard, with no goals or assists in 2019, Juan Mata, Andreas Pereira just aren’t cutting it. Neither are Angel Gomes and Tahith Chong.
Jadon Sancho will undoubtedly be looked at very closely by Ole and the board. He has been in sensational form for Dortmund since breaking through to the first-team and he’s still so young. The Englishman could easily form part of a fluid front three with any of the aforementioned players currently in Manchester.
It may well take more than £100m to snare Sancho from the German side and no doubt the player will have ample clubs to choose from. Manchester City will likely have a buyback option while Liverpool and Chelsea won’t go down easily.
It’s well known that Ed Woodward would love nothing more than a marquee name to help shirt sales and Sancho would fit the bill both financially, too.
The fact Sancho was willing to leave England at such a young age to go to Germany says much about his attitude and this will be in the manager’s thinking. A deal for Sancho, though, will not happen this winter. It would be in the summer and hopefully, he chooses Old Trafford…
Another target would be Lyon’s Moussa Dembele who’d be a direct replacement for Romelu Lukaku. After failed attempts to sign Erling Haaland, the former Celtic man is a different option – though again, he fits the bill for the Red Devils. That said, Lyon would be reluctant to sell their stars and would demand top-dollar.
The only potential incoming I can see this month would be a young player, who can develop going forward. The manager and his staff have shown that they’re happy to go down that route with the James purchase. Reading’s impressive young forward Danny Loader has been linked with a move to United. Ironically, like James who almost signed for Leeds, Loader very nearly signed for Wolves before the last window ran out of time.
The young talents of Chong and Angel Gomes will have learned much, though they still don’t look ready. Perhaps a loan move to the Championship would have been ideal, though to problematic contract situations that’s unlikely to happen.
So while I don’t feel there will be much activity this window, I think the potential targets that the manager and the club have in mind, coupled with those that will be let go, will go a long way to trying to forge a young, vibrant, energetic squad going forward which has the mental attributes needed to be at Manchester United.
As with any rebuild, there are no quick fixes. It will take time, but as long as we stick to our principles, win, lose or draw at least we will have a team we can connect with and be proud of that will give 100% on the pitch week in, week out.