Manchester United legend-turned-pundit Gary Neville believes the Red Devils need to invest on two or three forwards during this summer’s transfer window.
United started the campaign with plenty of promise after the big-money signings of Raphael Varane, Jadon Sancho and Cristiano Ronaldo. The latter’s return came out of the blue.
There were predictions of a potential Premier League title challenge, but nothing of that sort has happened. The club are currently facing a tough battle to finish in the top four.
Speaking on the Gary Neville podcast, Neville acknowledged that United’s troubles go beyond the manager, and they may need to reinforce the attack ahead of the next campaign.
The former United captain went on to highlight Liverpool’s Luis Diaz as an example, and was surprised that the club were not in the mix to sign him during the winter transfer window.
He said: “It’s in no doubt Manchester United need a new manager, but they also need to look very hard above that. You’ve got some smart operators in the clubs that they’re up against.”
“Luis Diaz was going to Tottenham, he’s then gone to Liverpool. There’s not even been a mention of him going to Manchester United.
“Manchester United are going to lose Cavani at the end of the season, probably going to lose Pogba.
“They’ve lost Greenwood, Rashford’s out of form, Martial’s gone to Sevilla and will probably go at the end of the season.
“They’re going to need two or three in those positions, and they weren’t even mentioned. You watch that lad (Diaz) in the Carabao Cup final, and I watched him on Saturday at Brighton.
“I’m thinking ‘what a player he is’. Tough, aggressive, works hard, creates chances, his reaction when he gave the ball away is unbelievable, he sprints back.
“The recruitment, I have to say, has been disappointing for a long time. I think it’s been better in the last two or three years, I know some people will disagree with that.
“I don’t think anybody at the time thought they were bad signings when they signed Varane or Sancho or Cristiano Ronaldo.
“I think everybody thought they were good signings, and I agree, I thought they were good signings.”
United’s defensive shortcomings have remained a concern this term, but there has been a further worry over the past months with the lack of cutting edge in the final third.
Bruno Fernandes was in the form of his life last season, but he has looked far off from the same player. Jadon Sancho has only recently found his feet in the Premier League.
Meanwhile, Ronaldo has netted an impressive 18 goals on his homecoming, but just four of those have come in 2022. He has also struggled for consistency this year.
The above-mentioned trio should be part of the plans next term, and there is need for strong competition for places which has been missing during the course of this season.
Mason Greenwood looked promising, but he may have played his final game for the club. Meanwhile, Marcus Rashford has looked out of sorts over the past couple of months.
Elsewhere, Jesse Lingard and Anthony Martial (out on loan) could be heading for the exit door when the transfer window reopens. This could pave the way for reinforcements.
United will need to be clever with their investment. They must recruit players, who would suit the next manager rather than the hierarchy taking matters into their own hands.
Stats from Transfermartkt.com
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