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Possible transfer targets and their chances of coming to Manchester United

In the news today (and in yesterday’s article on United’s 3 summer targets), a lot of names popped up as potential targets.

Let’s look at them one by one, and see whether there’s any weight to those rumours.

1. Owen Hargreaves

It’s clear that Manchester United want him, but the Sun is spinning it differently by saying that United want pay 20m+ for Owen.

Remember, this is the same Sun who announced last summer that United had bought Hargreaves only to have to issue a retraction later.

If he doesn’t come, it will be a big surprise.

Chances: Very Likely.

2. Dimitar Berbatov

A lot of hype in the press but is unlikely to move after just one season. He’s a good striker and is a perfect improvement on Saha, but if any Tottenham striker is coming, it will be Defoe or Keane (and even those two are unlikely).

Chances: Very Unlikely.

3. Franck Ribery

It’s not done and dusted and Arsenal do not ‘own’ Ribery, as much as Arsenal might tell you. For starters, Ribery’s main desire is to play on the big stage and to play, play and play. He’s like Ronaldo in that case. Ribery has named Manchester United, Barcelona, Real Madrid, Arsenal, Chelsea and Milan as his dream clubs (he has vivid dreams, apparently). He’s also said that he prefers the Spanish and English leagues.

It all depends on Marseille qualifying for the Champions League AND with United paying the right amount of money.

I think Ribery could be the surprise signing of the summer – he’ll be quite handy down either wing, and it’ll allow us to rotate Giggs and Ronaldo more effectively without having to resort to Park / Flecther / Richardson / Eagles. It’s called squad depth, in case you were wondering.

Chances: Possible, stiff competition bidding-wise.

4. Torres

Not happening. Get over it. He wants to stay at Atletico Madrid and to quote the Spaniard, he’ll stay even if he doesn’t play the CL until he’s 28 (i.e. the next 5 years or so).

Chances: Almost None.

5. Huntelaar

There’s a lot of hype about United tracking him, but then again United track plenty of players all throughout the season. Huntelaar’s no different. His chances of coming to Manchester United are very slim – it’s not as if he’s going to be on the top of United’s strikers list.

It’s hard to picture United without a big name forward, so everyone’s speculating. There’s plenty of criticism for Saha as well, even though all Ferguson has said is that Saha needs to get his head right. If you can’t trust Saha, then a striker will be needed, but United could easily play Ronaldo in the support striker role and push Rooney up front.

Huntelaar’s popular with the fans (like Torres is / was), but it’s not a likely option.

Chances: Unlikely, not United-class.

6. Tevez

Speaking of strikers, here’s a player who can easily be playing for any of the top four clubs next season (whether West Ham survive or not). He has the class to play for United, he has adapted to the Premiership as well and he is the perfect addition to the young attacking team Ferguson is building (Rooney, Ronaldo, Tevez, Ribery – sounds good, eh?).

Liverpool’s interest is documented but unproven (the only link is Mascherano, which is like saying that Defoe will come to United because of Carrick), Chelsea are linked with just about everyone and Arsenal have the strikers already (van Persie, Adebayor, Henry and 1-2 other kids). All top four clubs are looking for strikers so the competition could be fierce.

Chances: Possible, face stiff competition.

7. Nani

Who is better, Ribery or Nani?

That’s for Ferguson to decide. The media are painting this as a done deal, but in reality United might not even go for Nani if they get Ribery.

With Nani though, United have some advantage due to a lack of competition (Tottenham?), but it could still not happen.

Chances: Likely, but not done.

8. Micah Richards

This one is someone’s idea of a joke. For starters, United have Wes Brown and Danny Simpson at right back to fill in for Gary Neville. Second, Richards is Man City, hello? Third, Richards will be very expensive, and Chelsea are looking for a right-back.

Case closed?

Chances: Very unlikely.

9. Other Strikers

Darren Bent (why?), Michael Owen, Jermaine Defoe, David Villa and Samuel Eto’o have all been listed as possible targets for Manchester United.

All I’ll say is – Bent and Owen aren’t United material, Defoe is good but won’t top any lists, Villa and Eto’o WILL top lists but are bloody expensive and their clubs will stick a heavy price tag on them. Eto’o – too much competition for him, so it’s unlikely, but then again if it comes down to Eto’o himself it could be very interesting.

Chances: Very unlikely, but Eto’o and Villa are dream strikers so United could break the bank for them. The bank may not be able to match some other teams though.

10. Gareth Bale

A possibility, but depends on Southampton’s success in the playoffs. The best deal regarding Bale would be if we were to buy him and send him to Sunderland on loan – he’ll get regular Prem experience AND we’ll have him on the books as well.

Given the importance of other targets, this may not happen though. However, United are not in the business of letting good players go without a fight.

Chances: Possible.

11. Other midfielders

Pedersen, Nolan, Gattuso – they’ve all been mentioned. Pedersen would be a last resort, Nolan is club captain and would not trade it for a life on the bench, and Gattuso talks a lot so let’s not believe what he says, shall we? Milan will keep him at all costs, just as they are keeping Pirlo and Kaka. They’ve learned from the Sheva episode.

Chances: Not happening.

12. Other defenders and keepers

I doubt that we’re linked with any keepers (which is a good thing) but Ferguson will be looking towards the future and there’s a possibility that if things don’t go according to plan with Foster and Kuszczak, United could be forced to get a new keeper in 2008.

But that’s next season. This season, United’s goalkeepers are safe (hopefully no Chelsea-like disasters happen) and both Foster and Kuszczak will probably stay at United next season.

Defenders, it’s the same story. Pique and Evans have done well at their clubs this season, and at least one of them will be pushing for a starting place.

Chances: Not happening.


Did I miss any player? Let me know who I haven’t discussed and I’ll add them to the list.



  1. Pingback: List of potential summer targets for Manchester United | SoccerLens

  2. hasanhaider

    9 May 2007 at 00:58

    I’ll take Hargreaves and a striker, if Pique’s coming back. Which I hope he will. Think Rossi will make it back this season?

  3. Red Ranter

    9 May 2007 at 01:04

    Hey, nice blog you guys have out there! 🙂

    Anyway, my pick would be Hargreaves, Nani and a decent striker.

  4. Osman

    9 May 2007 at 01:13

    Firstly, WE ARE THE CHAMPIONS!!!!!!!
    Hargreaves is very likely, wud agree.
    Tevez is very liekly since now we are the champions.
    Wat abt David Villa??

  5. Ahmed Bilal

    9 May 2007 at 03:59

    Villa could be expensive mate

    Plus there are 1-2 wingers that we need to bring in.

  6. Jason

    9 May 2007 at 08:42

    Ribery, Ribery, Ribery please.

    more magic down the wings…..

  7. Rylie

    9 May 2007 at 10:55

    It seems that Fergie doesn’t want to tinker to much with only 2-3 admitted targets. If that is the case, I see the 50 mil. kitty buying some quality.

    (in order of necessity)

    1. Owen (unless Bayern continue to play games). Or ______. Your guess is as good as mine.

    2. Berbatov. Will Tottenham be able to keep him? Saha needs to move on. He has had his opportunity.

    3. Bale. What are they odds of United having 2 great Welsh Wingers back to back?

  8. vineeshp

    9 May 2007 at 15:27

    Well, Good ratings.
    Is Danny Simpson good enough to replace Neville? I mean given this season as an example. Nevilles bones have started to crack up. He is in his 30s and we need a replacement for him. Brown is a utility player and tackles well, but not anywhere near as great as Neville on overlaps with Ron.

    For me whoever the transfer targets are. We need to find replacements for the class of 92, Giggs, Scholes and Neville, who all look like they have another season of quality in them.

  9. Unitedinwords

    9 May 2007 at 16:43

    The need for a good right back is there but O’Shea can hold his own there and Brown does a decent job. A lot of talk about Danny Simpson but what about Bardsley? Surely he is ahead of Simpson.

    In terms of new players, I expect Hargreaves to come this summer (finally) and the price will not be £20m. If for some reason it does not materialise, we should look to secure Manuel Fernandes.

    We need more width. I think Ribery is first choice and Nani is second. Both would be good purchases.

    In terms of strikers, I don’t think we will sign Berbatov, Eto’o, Villa, Owen or Huntelaar. Fergie going for Larsson suggested these guys are not in play or he is not interested. And with so much money going in other areas it is hard to see how we will stump up the cash. I would absolutely love for us to sign Torres but admit its a bit of a dream scenario – but its good to dream…

    Anyone notice that Yakubu dropped out of Boro’s 16…he’s only 24 and proven with pace and a good goalscoring record. Just one from left field for you…

  10. crippledcobbler

    9 May 2007 at 20:17

    what about Quaresma? i’ve never heard Sir Alex talk about him. it would be great for the team, not to mention Ronaldo, to have another quickfooted portuguese on the left wing to fill in for Giggs. other than that, though, i’d say for midfield-Ribery, Hargreaves, and Nani. up front, -Tevez or Torres, take your pick. the perfect build for our young team, plus we could do the 4-3-3 deal. Tevez, Rooney, and Torres up top. Giggs, Ribery, Hargreaves, Scholes, and Ronaldo switching it out in the midfield, with Nani subbing in occasionally. and Heinze, Vidic, Ferdinand, and Neville on the back. good stuff. my Man U dream team of the 07-08 season!

  11. Keith Moses Kaira II

    12 May 2007 at 10:38

    United have no chance in hell of signing Villa. he is too expensive neither does he want to play for Us. United will break the bank for either Torres or E’too. (Yes Torres, despite what some of y’all think..) and will possibly go for Tevez if they can’t get a winger from Ribery or Nani or if Saha is sold.. As for the Owen/Defoe rumours..perish the thought….

    As for Hargreaves. That is a likely done deal. and a mandatory signing…

  12. samg

    17 May 2007 at 22:32

    wishful thinking crippledcobbler……….. even chelsea with all their mindless spending cant bring in all those player in in one season, and besides its not good to have so many egos in one team, just ask real madrid fans!! ideally they shuld bring in a hard man in midfield (that might very well be hargreaves), a winger (ribery or nani seem like the main targets, but i rather fancy having either nasri or lennon!) and a striker (no point repeating the list of prospects!)…

    another issue thats bothering me is that of bale……….. for the life of me i cant understand why he’s being linked to man utd. if they see him as a replacement of giggs, well and good. but if he’s being considered as a full back, i dont see why we shuld be involved in a bidding war for him. we already have two decent left backs. if u criticise evra’s and heinze’s defensive abilities, then how is bale any better?? granted, i havent seen much of him, but he comes across as more of a roberto carlos than a denis erwin…

  13. StewyStewy123

    21 May 2007 at 15:37

    United have almost officially signed hargreaves !!nearly 2o million take that away from a trnsfer kitty of what??? 40 million !!Thats not a lot 2 sign a full back , a winger n atarget man !!Do we really need hargeaves??Whos gonna b dropped from the midfield 2 let hargreaves in???

  14. Ahmed Bilal

    21 May 2007 at 15:40

    Stewy – we spend nothing last season, so make that 25 from then and 25 for this season, plus 25m extra for a one-time big buy.

    50m, 17 of which goes to Hargreaves. With the remaining 33, we could easily bring in a striker and a winger with money left over for Gordon / Bale.

  15. hip

    22 May 2007 at 15:08

    I agree with u med, but i thing its good if the club signing 4 player this season

    i prefer the new signing are: LB Gareth bale also can operate in ML
    MC Owen Hargreavs (already sign)

  16. hip

    22 May 2007 at 15:14

    I agree with u 2 med:

    Better if manutd signing 4 player

    Bale, Nani and torres/ kerlon owen already sign it will be entertain us with such young player like them

    my dream formation and the substitute

    Van Der Sar/Foster/Kuschaz

    G.Neville/Berdsley Ferdinand/Brown Vidic/Pique Evra/ Bale

    C.Ronaldo/Fletcher Hargreaves/Carrick scholes/Smith Giggs/Nani

    Rooney/Saha/Solkjaer Torres/Kerlon/Rossi

  17. adil alhinai

    25 May 2007 at 00:28

    you left out:
    Fabio Quagliarella- sampadoria want £11 mil for him, seen videos of him hes not bad,

    Rafael Palladino- Decent winger, SAF has already made a formal approach for him

    Rio Mavuba- i keep hearing his name to join man u or arsenal

    Johan Elmander- plays in france, man u have apperently made a £4 mil bid for him

    Afonso Alves- 34 goals in 31 matches in holland, only problem is he only just got his first caps, therefore work permit issue,

    Kerlon- man u have been tracking this player for some time now, only issues are work permit

    anderson- since nani is worth 20-25 mil, nearly twice what ferigie wanted to pay for him,SAF sent his brother to scout the player left winger 19 years old, good ong term replacement for giggs, is already proven to be good, won u-17 player of the year, and u-17 worldcup player of the tournament, ahead of giovanni dos santos, therefore he must be good, would love to see him at old trafford

  18. bardhi haxhialili

    26 May 2007 at 17:27

    that gona be owen , torres, hargreaves(already sure) ,quaresma , richards and dawson.

  19. Shannon Moss

    27 May 2007 at 10:21

    very good comments by adil alhinai

  20. saubi dauti-old fan-coach

    27 May 2007 at 15:39

    Best transfer for MAN-UTD 2007/08 are:

    Owen harg.IS A DONE DEAL

    1.F.TORRES He will be the best sing for United hi is a young and killer machine he will be a god partner to Roony that will be the best forwrad in the world if you have posibility sing him.

    2. S.NANI
    When I saw him playing, i thaught will he be one time playng for MAN UTD. I have saw all game that he played to Sporting Lisb. He is a good winger,he is like C.Roonaldo and he have a good pases like the king Z.ZIDAN

    Pleas thing about what I sead i have analaysed all things, and we do not need another player for this seson we can recall aur plaers who are in a lone deal.


  21. adil alhinai

    27 May 2007 at 18:39

    thank you shannon, i really hope united, get anderson or palladino, ribery is over hyped, we do not need a striked, just give rossi a chance, since we did not get bale who is the other target then

  22. Gordy147

    28 May 2007 at 00:07

    Basically United need a striker and a winger since Hardgreaves is finally coming. For striker i’d love to see Torres or Villa…but lets be realistic, those 2 love their clubs and it wud take a massive amount to get em (especially Villa). Eto’o said , quote,”I think it would be wonderful to go to Liverpool”, so hes out of the question. Honestly I think that leaves it down to Owen , if he forget about his pride, or Tevez, providing Liverpool or another Spanish club doesn’t make a move. Not looking too good is it…
    I think Huntelaar wud be a good signing for the future as he plays well , mabye another future Nistlerooy?

    Well that leads to wingers and I wud prefer Ribery and Nani. They both have the talent and cud well fit in with the pacy attacking force. What about Malouda? He’d be a good signing. Hes apparently linked to us and Arsenal , although Arsenal do have all those french guys.

    I guess we’ll just have to wait and see.

  23. brendy05

    31 May 2007 at 18:23

    Van Der Sar

    That is the most likly United team for most of next season!

    I would like to see Afsono Alves or Huntelaar brought in, preferably Huntelaar, hes 1st class in front of goal and is young, def the next Van Nistelrooy, probally will turn out even better!

    We dont need defenders this season, but for next season we wil have to get someone in aswell as a goalkeeper.

    Since the capture of Anderson and Nani and Hargreaves we just need 1 big stricker like torres or huntelaar and even viduka for the year and the trophy will be staying in Manchester!

  24. brendy05

    31 May 2007 at 18:35

    the perfect utd squad:

    Neville/Brown, Ferinand/Evans, Vidic/Silvestre, Evra/OShea
    Ronaldo/Fletcher, Scholes/Anderson , Hargreaves/Carrick, Nani/Giggs
    Rooney/Smith, Huntelaar/Torres/Alves

    That means we would sell Heinze, Soljkear, Saha, Richardson, and Park Ji-Sung(only because wed have 3 left midfielders in Nani, Anderson and Giggs)
    We would keep Heinze if oshea or brown go.. but 1 of the 3 will go…

  25. adil muhozi alhinai

    1 June 2007 at 20:29

    hehe i told you man u wantg anderson didnt i congrats david and fergie carlos

  26. sahil yadav

    11 June 2007 at 18:49

    hey, nice pick u have covered every likely player, i would fancy hargreaves comin in n a striker may b etoo or tevez, it would b nice 2 see ribery though,on the young manutd squad

  27. chris long

    23 June 2007 at 11:06

    what about nakamura?4 his lovely deadball!

  28. seife

    11 February 2011 at 22:23

    i love united !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  29. lemon

    19 May 2011 at 17:21

    keep hargraeves as the burned out scholesy stand-in , 3 buys ,1, gareth bale a wing-runner.2, an accomplished keeper with experience, who knows were from? 3, and another good defender in the form of pique. and in my opinion look out super cup, charity-shield, world clubs cup, premiership and european champions cup again – [all providing the 4th success is achieved] against barca on the up-coming final 28th may. the league and fa cups could maybe all be for fergie to test players and formations while resting others’ like you know

  30. GOD

    31 May 2011 at 23:19

    Alex ferguson is missing a nutter “think KEANE” in central midfield he should bring in someone like JOEY BARTON that will stop the counter attacks i think someone like barton would of made a big diffence in the final utd were playing like a bunch of fairys it was a shame to watch what could of been one of the greatest ever turn out to looklike a one sided fa cup draw because we were to scared to get stuck in if somelike barton was on the pitch he would of ripped messi’s legs offs if he had to that would of stopped the lil cnut utd sign a central midfielder thats not scared of bringing a finger nail along with Sneijder!!

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