Manchester United are, if rumours are true this time, expected to announce their new manager in the next few days. Louis van Gaal, the man tipped to replace David Moyes has been ‘imminent’ for the past fortnight, but nothing official have been announced, Ed Woodward has said an announcement will be made in due course and Van Gaal himself has tried to play down rumours as he is heading into the FIFA World Cup as the coach of the Netherlands, who play their first warm up match against Ecuador on Saturday evening, which will be broadcast live on MUTV.
Rumours suggest that Van Gaal and the Netherlands squad will have Sunday and Monday off before they head to Portugal for a warm weather training camp to help them acclimatise for the searing heat in Brazil this summer. If this is true, an announcement will be expected. Major announcements can only be made whilst the NYSE is not trading, which means Monday to Friday a time slot between 21:00 and 14:30 GMT, but at weekends, an announcement can be made at any time as the NYSE will not be trading.
In Friday’s Guardian, it was suggested that Van Gaal has handed United a series of lists which show which players the club need to be targeting ahead of the new season. There are some world class players on the list, then there will be some other targets, should the club fail to bring in the managers number one choices, which is pretty likely, especially when you think back to last summer. One player on that list is Bayern Munich and Netherlands winger, Arjen Robben.
The veteran Dutch winger is suggested as Van Gaal’s number one target, and despite Robben’s age and price tag, he would improve the squad, but I have some doubts as to whether any move could happen. The Metro has suggested that a fee of around £25 million would need to be payable to the Bundesliga champions and Robben would expect his £160,000 weekly wage to be raised considerably.
This all seems very good on paper, but when you consider the rumours that suggest United are confident they can secure the signing of Bayern team-mate Toni Kroos before the World Cup and with the links with another team-mate Thomas Müller also continuing to surface, it does make you wonder whether the German champions would allow three of their most talented players leave the club in the same transfer window to a club that will rival them in the UEFA Champions League the season after next, should United qualify next season.
Bayern may need to money to strengthen their squad, but I just do not see three of their players leaving this summer. One is possible if reports are true, two at a push and if that was the case, Kroos would be my first choice as I would like to see the midfield have some considerable attention paid to it as Marouane Fellaini has not met the minimum requirement in the last season and Michael Carrick and Darren Fletcher are not there players they once were and Tom Cleverley really is not proving himself to be the player United need, although that is debatable among some United supporters.
Arjen Robben would be a great buy if he can be secured for a low transfer fee and on lower or similar wages to what he is currently on at Bayern Munich, but I cannot see United signing a player with a few years left at the top at a bargain price. Who would you like to see United bring in this summer?
By Paul Bienkowski
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