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Manchester United confirm Luke Shaw will be sidelined for around a month; time to panic?

Manchester United left-back Luke Shaw is out of action for around four weeks with a hamstring injury, news which was broken by Sky Sports in the last hour and has since been confirmed by the Old Trafford club. Shaw arrived from Southampton at the end of June after travelling to Brazil for England’s FIFA World Cup debacle. It was thought that the England international would be eased into his new role by Patrice Evra, but he has since left for Juventus with no experienced cover in the left-back position, something which could be a worry ahead of the new season.

United entertain Swansea City at Old Trafford at 12:45 on Saturday in the first Barclays Premier League match of the season, which will be shown live on BT Sport. Louis van Gaal’s side played their final pre-season match this summer against Valencia on Tuesday evening at the Theatre of Dreams and Shaw was one of the players not included in the starting eleven or the list of substitutes. The Dutchman confirmed after the match that Shaw was one of the injured players, joining the likes of Rafael da Silva, Antonio Valencia, Jonny Evans and Michael Carrick on the sidelines, which with no other major signings will leave the squad pretty bare at this moment in time.

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United have always struggled with injuries and it always seems to be the defence which has struggled, most recently with Phil Jones, Chris Smalling and Jonny Evans, who has periods on the sidelines last season. We also saw Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic spend time on the sidelines last season, both have since left the club. This new injury crisis could force United’s hand in the transfer window with Marcos Rojo, Daley Blind, Angel di Maria and Arturo Vidal all strongly linked with the club. Executive vice chairman Ed Woodward spoke a few weeks ago suggesting that the club could compete with their rivals for the best players and have the funds available to spend big fees on players, it is alright talking about that, but it seems to be putting that into practise that is something which may not happen.

Obviously United have players that are currently on the fringes of the first team to rely on, but that will be considered as a gamble, a gamble that could well pay off if Van Gaal wants to give it a go. Both Tyler Blackett and Reece James have impressed during the pre-season tour, both could do a job in the first team when needed. I am sure they will both accept their chances, if given and aim to impress the manager. Of course, that will only impress a small percentage of the clubs fan base as some supporters require superstar players in the teams they support, but that seems to be something that United have never really done. Over the years only a handful of star players have been brought in, with the majority of players coming through the Academy and making a name for themselves. Obviously every supporter wants a marquee signing, but sometimes that is just not something that ends up happening. I do hope something good happens this summer though, but I will be more than happy with players coming through the Academy making a name for themselves.

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