Indeed, after another shallow defeat to Newcastle United, they sit merely two points above the drop zone. There’s a relegation party being organized in May just in case. They are +7000 to be relegated.
It looks unlikely things will improve anytime soon. The players simply aren’t performing. Ole Gunner Solskjaer’s tactics have become obsolete and there’s just no life in the team. Lethargic is perhaps the perfect word to sum up their situation, with clear-cut chances hard to come by. Not like their current attackers are decisive enough to finish the little ones that do come by.
United clearly didn’t spend enough during the summer, meaning major reinforcements must be made to revitalize their attack. With pressure piling on distancing themselves from a he relegation zone, here are a few players United could buy in January to turn things around for them.
5. Steven Bergwijn
United have had a persistent problem attacking through their right-flank, with pointless delivery from that side rendering them useless due to the lack of talent. Everyone thought Daniel James as the fix, but he’s more a natural left-winger who loves cutting in. Aaron Wan-Bissaka’s a sturdy defender but still lacks that delivery sense from the right.
They still need to address their right-winger problems, but Steven Bergwijn can be a clever solution. The Netherlands international is a feisty figure through the right, having the pace along with the dribbling skills to torment defenders. He has a WhoScored rating of 7.41 when playing through the right, having scored one and assisted twice from that.
Moreover, his 3 key passes & 1.8 per game proves he’s a creative, electric figure moving through the wings. A tricky winger like Bergwijn, who can cross & cut from the right, is ideal to bring another dimension to re-energize United’s front-line.
At 22, the PSV Eindhoven winger fits the right age profile as well for a Man U squad that should build through youth.
4. Sean Longstaff
What United lacked in their embarrassing loss to Newcastle United was the passion which Sean Longstaff displayed for the Magpies. While his younger brother Matty stole the show with his winner, Sean’s been among the best things to come out from their youth system in ages. He’s determined, tough-tackling and possesses a valuable never-say-die spirit.
Of course, Scott McTominay wears his badge with pride, having produced some inspired performances recently, but he often gets overrun with little back-up. Nemanja Matic is too slow, while Fred is too clumsy. Longstaff’s expected assists per 90 are superior to all three aforementioned players, proving he possesses that cutting creative edge.
He tends to run his socks off, make crucial interceptions and drive his side forward with lung-busting runs. Longstaff was linked with United in the summer, as his recent fiery performance proves he’s the one needed to run oppositions to the ground.
He’s also 21 and from England, fitting key criteria United are after in their rebuild.
3. Mario Mandzukic
Another one that got away for United in the summer, Mario Mandzukic was there for the taking as Romelu Lukaku’s replacement. However, OGS couldn’t get it done due to wage issues, instead deciding to trust Marcus Rashford & Anthony Martial to come up with the goods.
Well, that hasn’t worked out. United is only scoring 5 goals in 7 games since that Chelsea drubbing. Mandzukic hasn’t appeared for Juventus this season, but is again available in January. The 2018 FIFA World Cup finalist is everything United need in a warrior in the attack.
Manduzkic is hard-working, versatile enough to even move through the wings and a terror inside the area. He’s very clinical inside the area, with the effectiveness for scoring on big occasions. His bullish presence is also unnerving for defenders. The Croatian can battle his way into scoring goals, with his elite mentality making him the ideal mentor for United’s growing strikers.
At 33, he’s long in the tooth for a rebuild. But like our #1 on the list, he will solve United’s biggest short-term need in their quest to stay above relegation.
2. Bruno Fernandes
When Man United fans begged for a creative centre-midfield to take some pressure off Paul Pogba’s shoulders, they decided to just raise the responsibility on the wantaway Frenchman. Ander Herrera was never replaced, nor was Marouane Fellaini.
The results of doing nothing are showing, with United’s static midfield barely influencing their results. Bruno Fernandes is still at Portuguese side Sporting, but United must go on with a big bid in January. He’s scored six goals and assisted five from attacking midfield this season. Those numbersthe entire United midfield haven’t been able to match.
The industrious, creative Fernandes has that cutting-edge which they lack. Be it his bombing long-shots, ripping through-balls or a hard-working tenacity, Fernandes is the proactive, multi-layered workhorse. He would spark their creativity as well as solve their goal-scoring issues from midfield.
1. Zlatan Ibrahimovic
The more troubles start creeping up on United, the more it becomes confusing why they let go of Zlatan Ibrahimovic in the first place. He was “replaced” with Lukaku after sustaining a terrible injury, but letting him go without a proper plan now seems unnecessary.
Zlatan’s since gone onto take the MLS by storm, scoring 52 goals in 56 games for LA Galaxy! He’s reaffirmed himself the King of MLS, scoring incredible efforts to inspire them to many victories. However, here at High Press Soccer, we feel Ibra would be a perfect buy for United in January. He still has that hunger in him after having successfully recovered from the injury.
Ibra’s a beast aerially, rarely scuffs his chances & the ideal finisher United need to creep in their limited chances. Zlatan’s already reiterated he’d be open to returning to Old Trafford, as they shouldn’t make any second guesses when it comes to resigning this lethal goal-scorer.