Manchester United are reportedly interested in signing Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Idrissa Gueye this summer, at least according to The Sun. The 30-year-old Senegalese midfielder has Premier League experience, previously playing for Everton. He left the Merseyside club last summer for a fee in the region of £29 million. United have yet to make a concrete offer for the veteran midfielder, which leads me to suspicion as United are continually linked with players.
This particular report comes from French source Le10Sport. The player, who will turn 31 in September will not be a long-term option but Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will need some strength in depth in his midfield ahead of the new season, especially as cover for Nemanja Matic, who recently signed a new contract at the Old Trafford club. Gueye can play as a central midfielder or as a defensive midfielder, which puts him in that category with United not having suitable cover.
This season, with Paul Pogba on the sidelines for much of the season, United utilised Matic with Scott McTominay and Fred, sometimes with Andreas Pereira used in rotation. It was clear at that time that Solskjaer needed to sort out his midfield. The arrival of Bruno Fernandes has made a mark on sorting that out with the Portuguese international settling in well and showing just what he can do. Pogba’s return has helped create something but in the last four matches, things have not gone to plan.
This season at PSG, Gueye made a total of 31 appearances before the French Ligue 1 and Ligue 2 were cancelled because of the coronavirus pandemic, which may have been premature as the leagues have continues in England, Germany, Spain and Italy without major incident. The Senegalese midfielder scored just one goal, assisting a further two, playing in the Coupe de la Ligue, the Coupe de France, Ligue 1 and the UEFA Champions League – which is set to continue next month.
It is suggested that Solskjaer is seeking to add a defensive midfielder to his squad this season and personally, there are better targets out there than Gueye. Whilst he might add experience and strength in depth to the squad, he’s hardly a long-term signing which means the manager will need to look again in the transfer market in a year or two to find another. Tim Fosu-Mensah could be tested in that position which might raise his chances in earning a new contract at the club.
However, that said, Solskjaer should really be looking at a younger player to target, one that might be able to play in other positions too, with him being a defensive minded player but not necessarily a player that will be seeking to defend for the entire match. United have, despite it not working of late, playing a high-tempo attacking came, pushing the opposition into their own half. The new defensive minded midfielder would need to be quick, have bags of energy and be an upgrade on Matic, who he would replace in the team. I don’t think that is Idrissa Gueye.
Written by John Walker