Man Utd: The first six fixtures of the new Premier League season
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Manchester United have two midfielders in mind for next summer’s transfer window, according to reports. John Murtough is currently in charge of recruitment at Old Trafford, with Ed Woodward then signing off deals. And despite four players recently arriving, the Red Devils have more intentions to bolster their squad.
This was a good summer for United, who moved with speed and efficiency to bring in four fresh faces.
Tom Heaton moved back to Old Trafford on a free transfer from Aston Villa, 11 years after he’d moved on during Sir Alex Ferguson’s time in charge.
Jadon Sancho then followed, with the England international touching down from Borussia Dortmund in a huge £73million deal.
Raphael Varane was next, moving from Real Madrid.
And, on deadline day, United officially confirmed the emotional return of Cristiano Ronaldo – who rejoined the club from Juventus.
However, fans weren’t entirely happy.
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Many wanted the club to sign a midfielder, too, with the likes of Fred and Nemanja Matic struggling for consistency in the middle of the park.
But that didn’t happen, with the club instead being content to go with what they’ve currently got.
However, while that’s the case, United Muppetiers claim Murtough is eyeing Declan Rice or Yves Bissouma when the transfer window reopens next summer.
Rice has flourished for West Ham over the past two years, helping the Hammers secure Europa League football last term.
And Bissouma has been in fine form for Brighton ever since his move from Lille in January 2018.
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United are planning to go after both players next summer, it seems.
And whether they’re successful in strengthening their midfield, after failing to do so this summer, remains to be seen.
Speaking in July, former United star Paul Parker endorsed his old side’s interest in Rice and expressed a belief he’d be a good Old Trafford hit.
“If you’re going to talk about impact [of transfers], I think he could maybe be the most important one and could make the difference in a really-good partnership compared to an average one,” he told MEN Sport.
“The way he plays, the authority he plays with, he nicks balls off people’s toes, he very rarely gets booked.
“United don’t really have anyone like that, the only one is ageing, Nemanja Matic, there’s no-one else in that role who can play.
“You can through Fred into the mix and he can go and do a job but he isn’t disciplined enough to do it.
“Scott McTominay isn’t a Manchester United midfielder player, if you’re looking to win things consistently, he’s not the player to play in a holding role because he doesn’t know how to play in that role.
“At this moment in time, he’s not ready for that but Declan Rice is.
“He’s young, he’s emerging and he’s already an old head on young shoulders.
“He’s absolutely the person to do that. If you look for someone abroad, you have to worry about them settling into the Premier League.
“Rice can do the job sitting in front and breaking up play.
“What he can do as well is get forward into the box, he can change the game by opening his legs up and running with the ball.
“I’ve seen him play a lot at West Ham and I’ve seen enough of him to know that he can do the job.
“As well as that, if you’re in a little bit of trouble, he can go and do a really good job at centre-half as well.”
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