The iconic club will renew its line-up after the sale.
Ronaldo’s departure has coincided with MU’s winning streak. There are plenty of playmaking problems, but against Arsenal playing second-best with counterattacks could have brought a draw. But third place is never enough for the Gunners, and it is essential to believe in victory.
Furthermore, there will be changes at United, with talks about the sale of the club has begun. And that means changes to the squad. Billionaires come in with a transfer budget, like Boehly at Chelsea. Ten Hag has gone through the MU transfers and has now openly criticised after the defeat to Arsenal. There will be break-ups along the way. Let’s review each revealing case.
Harry Maguire (defender, 29)
The market value of football’s once most expensive defender has dropped to €30 million. There is talk of a transfer to West Ham because if he gets stuck on the bench at Manchester United, there will be problems with playing practice for the national team. There’s not much time until Euro 2024, and Harry can’t sit on the bench as he’ll be 30 soon. He’s not really settled on the pitch either – he’s associated with the team’s big problems in defence. By removing the captain, Ten Hag gets a bundle of world champions, and there are Jones and Lindelöf on the bench.
David De Gea (goalkeeper, 32)
For now, a review of the contract has not been ruled out. Especially if Betis only call up the Spaniard. But it is doubtful that Ten Hag trust David. The goalkeeper has made mistakes this season. But if the entire defence improves, there will be memories of the times when De Gea helped out. But to make MU a new champion, another goalkeeper is needed, with the reliability of Peter Schmeichel and Van der Sar. Dubravka came on loan for a reason; the coaching staff were looking for options.
Jadon Sancho (winger, 22)
A lot of money was paid for the Watford and MC trainee but gained nothing. Perhaps Maguire’s story will repeat again. The big bid will not play out, and the value on the market will continue to fall, having to give up the marginal midfielder for ‘pennies’ in terms of what was previously paid. Sancho has failed to get into the MU game. Ten Hag always has an option with Fernandez on the flank in a 4-2-3-1 scheme. They signed the unclear Anthony, the prolific Rashford hasn’t gone, and there’s Garnacho and Elanga. Sancho has become too cramped.
Anthony Martial (forward, 27)
Ten Hag appreciates Martial’s stubbornness. Since Ronaldo’s departure, the Frenchman has been proving his right to be in the starting line-up. But there are health problems that prevent him from playing full games. A rival has also appeared in the shape of Wout Weghorst. The burly striker will prevent Antoni from getting into the starting line-up alongside Rashford, Anthony and Fernandes. If Martial were that good, he would play in the World Cup instead of Benzema and Giroud.
There will be many farewells, and the main intrigue in preparing for a mass break-up of players always has to do with who will be brought in to replace them. If De Gea’s new contract is not agreed upon, there will be another goalkeeper. Looking for a main forward – Kane will hunt down unless Osimhen is persuaded to do so. Need a reserve central defender: Tuanzebe is injured, and Bailly has health problems on loan at Marseille.