Man United 2017/18: The three players Mourinho should sign to revive the Red DevilsPublished December 20, 2016
We’re only halfway through the 2016/17 season but it feels right to take a look ahead at the team Manchester United are trying to build. Although the Red Devils have had an upturn in fortunes in recent weeks, it’s extremely unlikely that they could pose a title threat in the second half of the campaign.
They’re 13 points behind Premier League leaders Chelsea and finishing in the top of such a competitive half of the table will be deemed a success.
So, knowing that the likes of Memphis Depay and Morgan Schneiderlin will be sold, who will Jose Mourinho look to bring in? We list three players who would complete the United puzzle and turn them into the force of old.
- Victor Lindelof, Benfica
If transfer reports are to be believed, this is a done deal. Sweden international Lindelof is a tough centre-half in the mould of United legend Nemanja Vidic.
Considering nobody has properly filled the boots of the famous Serbian and his fellow retired defensive partner Rio Ferdinand, Lindelof’s £38 million price tag suggests that he’s being viewed as a long-term solution. Phil Jones and Marcos Rojo have been playing well at the back but the opportunity to form an alliance only arose after Eric Bailly picked up an injury. When Bailly is fit and Lindelof arrives, they’re likely to be displaced by Mourinho’s preferred duo.
- Gelson Martins, Sporting Club
Another player plying his trade in Lisbon, Gelson is a Sporting academy product and the latest in a long line of wingers that the club has produced that United have taken an interest in. Clubs scouts have watched him for much of the campaign but face competition from the likes of Real Madrid.
With Memphis Depay having flopped and United having no conventional winger – Mourinho has often played Rooney, Rashford and Martial on the flanks – Gelson could be a very useful addition. He reportedly has a €45 million release clause. The 21-year-old could follow Cristiano Ronaldo and Nani to Old Trafford.
- Antoine Griezmann, Atletico Madrid
The biggest of the trio of potential signings, United would probably have to break the world record for a second consecutive summer to sign Atletico hotshot Griezmann. One of the standout players at Euro 2016, he’s been a revelation since moving to the Calderon in 2014, scoring 66 goals in 128 appearances. He offers a very different range of qualities to Zlatan Ibrahimovic and would compliment the skills and pace of Rashford and Martial. He’s admitted that he wants to play with France buddy Paul Pogba at club level and reportedly ruled out a move to the Emirates after Laurent Koscielny tried to convince him to switch. A truly world-class player.