The press are not often to be believed, but the overwhelming consensus is that a deal to bring Paul Pogba back to United is done pending formalities. This appears to be the fourth singing that Jose Mourinho has been alluding to recently, and would thus bring a close to what he called the ‘fundamental market.’ With that in mind, in addition to the fact that our ‘supplementary market’ awaits us, let’s look at five players, some linked to us, some not, who could come in after Pogba.
The 22-year-old AS Monaco right-back has been strongly linked with United recently. Should the Brazilian arrive, it’d appear to be a big indication that the days of either Matteo Darmian or Antonio Valencia are numbered? Jose Mourinho gave him an unexpected debut at Real Madrid whilst Fabinho was on loan at Castilla from Portuguese side Rio Ave.
Unusually tall for a full back standing at 6ft 2, he’s also comfortable playing in defensive midfield. Strong and fast, Fabinho would appear to be well suited to the pace and physicality of the Premier League. It’s also been a while since a right back has been strong in defence and adventurous in attack at Old Trafford but Fabinho could potentially be the one to change that if his performances with Monaco are anything to go by. Arguably the best possible option available in his position at this moment in time, if Mourinho doesn’t particularly like what he sees in United’s current right backs, Fabinho would be an exciting purchase.
Undoubtedly one of the best centre-backs around right now, Bonucci would be a very difficult player to get, especially due to the player in this article’s title who is already looking to be on his way out of Juventus. However, if there’s one thing that Woodward and co. have shown in the last few summers, it’s that they’re willing to go for whoever they want rather than settle for safer targets.
Fantastic on the ball and rock solid in defence, Euro 2016 stand out Bonucci attacked and then pursued an armed robber in 2012 – a glimpse of the character of the man both on and off the pitch and he would certainly add some grit and drive to the squad in addition to a wealth of experience. It’s known that he’d be hard to prise away however as mentioned previously on MUFCLatest, a new challenge away from the country he’s always lived and played in may well interest him and the Red Devils would be smart to test the waters.
Another option at centre back, and a more attainable one, Shkodran Mustafi would be a bargain for whichever decides to take him away from struggling Valencia, and the way in which valuations are skyrocketing at present, bargains are increasingly harder to come by.
The German international shone last season despite the struggles his club faced, proving to be a leader and resilient. Similar to Bonucci in that he’s not afraid to put himself where it hurts, Mustafi is also strong aerially and offensively, is a threat at corners as shown against Ukraine in Germany’s opening game at this summer’s European Championships. He’s currently strongly linked to Arsenal which could prove an incentive for United to swoop in and supersede the Gunners. At 24 years old, Mustafi’s got room to grow and has his prime years ahead of him and Mourinho would be wise to try and tie him down and reap the rewards.
The 17-year-old appears to be facing an uncertain future at West Ham amidst doubts over his involvement with their first team, and his wandering eye has led to both Manchester clubs being reportedly interested. Potentially a signing with a view to the future, bringing in one of England’s brightest young prospects would be a good move and it’s always nice to beat your rivals to a player.
Comfortable in possession and with a growing physique that helps him impose himself in games, he has all the tools to become a top centre back or defensive midfielder depending on where coaches believe his future best lies. His amazing debut against Arsenal in which he famously shut down Mesut Ozil for the entirety of his 79 minutes on the pitch. Despite the talents of Tuanzebe and Williams etc. already in the club’s ranks, it wouldn’t hurt to add a little more competition and increase the pool that Mourinho could call upon. A deal for Oxford would represent a minuscule outlay for United but the results could be much larger.
The trail has gone cold on the young starlet who previously looked like he might make the move to United, however, this is a transfer that could still prove to be a wise one should the club pursue it. The Pachuca winger looks set to have a bright future, most likely at one of Europe’s elite eventually and United could beat everyone else to the punch if they gamble on his potential early.
Quick, intelligent, exceptional technically and with a good eye for a pass, Lozano looks like Mexico’s next big thing. The 20-year-old has seven caps to his name and impressed observers in the Copa America. ‘Chucky’ as he’s been affectionately dubbed has 21 goals from his 91 appearances at club level which is highly impressive for a player his age and whether the club move or not, he’s caught the eye of top United scout, Jim Lawlor, according to Pachuca’s club president. Lawlor was the one who brought Javier Hernandez to Ferguson’s attention so he’s a person to listen to and if Mourinho does listen and act, we may just have another hot prospect on our hands.