Manchester United are set for a major squad rebuild this summer following a dismal campaign in the Premier League and other competitions.
Incoming boss Erik ten Hag will be key in the decision-making, and there could be high-profile departures coinciding with new signings.
As of now, Edinson Cavani, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata, Lee Grant, Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba will leave at the expiry of their contracts in June.
Here are five transfers (in & out) that could get the United faithful believing in the team again ahead of the 2022/23 campaign.
Frenkie de Jong
United have been yearning for a top-class defensive midfielder and De Jong could be an ideal solution. The Dutchman is not known for his tough tackling, but is excellent when it comes to controlling the proceedings in midfield. He is also superb with his distribution with over 91 per cent passes completed this term.
With his strong technical attributes, he would fit perfectly under Ten Hag, having already played under him for Ajax. It appears United are already making progress towards his signature. Reputed journalist Gerard Romero claims that a deal is 95 per cent done.
Harry Maguire has had a poor 2021/22 campaign with United which has led to serious questions over his future. The England star has been culpable of making multiple positional and unforced errors this term – a number of them have contributed to the opposition scoring.
He could be stripped of the captain’s armband soon, but a summer departure cannot be ruled out either. United are hot on the trail for a new centre-back, and the focus appears on signing a left-footed option, possibly to partner Raphael Varane. In a World Cup year, Maguire would not want to find himself as a regular on the bench.
Talking about a left-footed centre-back, Torres appears back on the club’s radar, having opted against signing him last summer. The Spaniard was heavily linked with the Red Devils, but they ended up pursuing long-term target Raphael Varane from Real Madrid.
It is unclear whether the Spaniard can be lured without Champions League football, but he would be a quality acquisition with his ball-playing ability. While he has a good aerial presence, he is known for his progressive distribution. He averages 4.68 passes in the final third this term.
United have been overly dependent on Cristiano Ronaldo up front this term. The Portuguese has amassed 24 goals, most of which have come in winning situations. The hierarchy must find a quality young striker that can complement Ronaldo or lead the line on his own.
Nunez would be a perfect signing, having netted 34 goals for Benfica this term. The Uruguayan does not shy away from the big games with Champions League goals against Ajax, Barcelona, Bayern Munich and Liverpool. His excellent finishing and explosive pace on the counter-attack is what United need to get on top of defences.
United have been touted to sign a new right-back this summer and it appears they are lining up an approach for Mukiele. The Frenchman was previously signed by Ralf Rangnick for Leipzig and he could play a key role in luring him to Old Trafford this summer.
The 24-year-old would be an upgrade on Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Diogo Dalot with his creativity. The duo have failed to make a single goal contribution this term compared to Mukiele’s seven. The Leipzig star is also solid with his tackling, interceptions and aerial ability. As per Bild, he could be prised away for just €10 million with his contract expiring in June 2023.
Stats from Transfermarkt.com