We need 3 new CMs. Who do we sign?

NZT-One

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For the scouts in here. Find me someone who:

- Specialises in holding on to the ball and passing it on quickly (and precisely)
- Preferably hard to dribble or run past
- Is at most 26 years old
- Has played at least 2 full seasons in a top 6 league and done well in that time
- If he plays in France, Portugal, Germany or Italy then he must be one of the best central midfielders in the league
- If he plays in Spain or England then he can fly a little bit more under the radar, but his skills must be apparent
- No history of serious injuries
- Good attitude (this one is of course a bit hard to gauge)
I think, the worst thing we can do is trying to make this task harder than it should be by expecting to find ONE player that has all those characteristics. The actual task is finding a working midfield - and to build that, we have to look at the available players and how much they fit into a midfield that we want. As hard as that sounds, if Casemiro doesn't have the legs anymore, he shouldn't be planned with. Same, to a different degree, applies to Bruno too. His passing is good and he certainly knows how to look busy but most players in his position on the pitch have significantly better close-control and potentially more tactical awareness.
To come up with a plan isn't an easy trait... So many of our players have at least one significant flaw... Honestly, the only one I consider to have the skillset to be a longterm option is Mainoo and he is 18 and shouldn't be under such pressure.

Don't need 3. Also depends on what the targets are, and when we hope to achieve them. Given squad needs, I'd say a deep 2 of Casemiro and Mainoo to start with Eriksen and someone like Andre coming in to form the group is good short term. Then you replace Eriksen, with a squad player deep playmaker, and eventually replace Casemiro.

Or you sell Casemiro for bigger money and bring 2 in.
Do you mean, start with one of Casemiro or Mainoo? Do you consider them comparable players?
 

luke511

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Hugo Larsson will start to get a lot of mentions soon. He looks brilliant to me and is apparently doing really well since signing for Frankfurt in the Summer. There's quite a few promising Scandinavian central midfielders emerging right now - Sverre Nypan, Lucas Bergvall, Matt O'Riley etc.

I really like the look of Khéphren Thuram and feel like we miss that sort of dynamism.
Matt O'Riley is a great shout.
 

Green Army

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I have watched a lot of Andre Trinidad at Fluminese who is a natural and hard working No 6. He was linked with Liverpool during the close season but is now close to joining Fulham.

He is a typical ball winner who sits in front of the back 4 and does the simple things like win the ball and pass it to a team mate who is more creative. His defensive presence would allow Bruno and Mount to focus on the attacking side if their game.

Surely Old Trafford is a more appealing prospect than Fulham.
 

didz

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Agreed. I think we’d do very well by adding a cheap striker like Guirassy in the January window, then 3 centre mids and a CB in the summer, along with Greenwood being brought back in the side as a striker. It would have a transformative effect as long as we recruit well.
Didn't realise I'd been so subtle.
 

Scandi Red

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I think, the worst thing we can do is trying to make this task harder than it should be by expecting to find ONE player that has all those characteristics.
For someone who has this as their fulltime job it shouldn't be so difficult. I'm pretty sure that they have a database. If you plot in the following then you are probably only left with maybe 40-50 candidates, if even that.

- Central midfielder
- 26 or younger
- Plays for a team in England, Spain, Germany, Italy, Portugal or France
- Has played at least 5000 minutes in the last 2 years in the countries above
- Does not play for: United, City, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs, Real, Barca, PSG or Bayern

This covers more than half my criteria. After that we can start looking at characteristics and skills, which of course is a much bigger task. But all we need is that a couple of players from this batch shows promise. And theoretically they shouldn't be very expensive unless we are fighting with our rivals over their signature.

Maybe it's naive, but this seems to be the logical approach to me. Our big name signings never work out. And stop gaps are only temporary solutions.
 

Bubz27

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Jerry Puddleduck, 22 yo CDM at Frosinone looks a good prospect, who ticks a lot of boxes and has links to Manchester.
Real players please, take it seriously. No fifa regens.
 

Ágætis Byrjun

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Khephren Thuram, Caqueret (One of the very few things that is working at OL), and Vermeeren. The latter I think is going to the very top and any serious and smart club would already start talking with him, which rules us out.
 

didz

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For someone who has this as their fulltime job it shouldn't be so difficult. I'm pretty sure that they have a database. If you plot in the following then you are probably only left with maybe 40-50 candidates, if even that.

- Central midfielder
- 26 or younger
- Plays for a team in England, Spain, Germany, Italy, Portugal or France
- Has played at least 5000 minutes in the last 2 years in the countries above
- Does not play for: United, City, Liverpool, Arsenal, Chelsea, Spurs, Real, Barca, PSG or Bayern

This covers more than half my criteria. After that we can start looking at characteristics and skills, which of course is a much bigger task. But all we need is that a couple of players from this batch shows promise. And theoretically they shouldn't be very expensive unless we are fighting with our rivals over their signature.

Maybe it's naive, but this seems to be the logical approach to me. Our big name signings never work out. And stop gaps are only temporary solutions.
Out of curiosity/boredom, I ran a quick search on Smarterscout. I adjusted for ratings on ball retention and defending quality to filter out all the players who scored diabolically in either.

Filtering out everyone over 26 and playing for rival clubs, and then checking that they meet the requisite number of minutes surprisingly only leaves two DM options, Salis Abdul Samed at Lens and Fran Beltrán at Celta Vigo, and one CM option in Barella.

Note that I couldn't include players from the Portuguese league so it's just the big 5. There will also be players who will have met the minutes threshold by playing both at DM and CM, but I'm bored not psychotic, so did not go looking for them.

Oh, and two Newcastle players made the cut but I didn't bother including them because who are we kidding?
 

Bwuk

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Whilst I do think we need CMs, I think the priority has to be the wingers tbh.
 

LDUred

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Carlos Baleba is a player we should be looking at. He's inexperienced, but a bit like Mainoo, the obvious quality and ability is there.
 

groovyalbert

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We will spend £50m on Kalvin Phillips and offer Kroos £400k a week on a 5-year contract.
 

daba

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1) Andre - would be a perfect player to take the pressure off Mainoo and allow us to integrate him slowly into the side rather than thrust him in and overwork him to an ACL injury like Gavi. He wouldn’t shut Mainoo out completely as Mainoo could play as more of an 8 alongside him in matches too. (Complete in Jan 2024 - £35m)

2) Thuram - I think we need someone who can cover ground quickly and contribute a both ends of the pitch. Onana at Everton is a solid option who offers this but he’s probably costing £60-70m now and if we sign Andre who is more defensively minded, I think we should get Thuram who will be cheaper and easier to buy due to Nice-INEOS link, has a similar physical presence but is superior going forward. (Complete in Summer 2024 - £40m)

3) Rabiot - realistically we should have signed him last summer on a free but to my knowledge he only signed a 1 year extension so will be available again. Offers experience which we will need if we lose Casemiro and McTominay as part of this rebuild. Generally we should be focusing on younger prospects but Rabiot still has a few years in him and on a free it’s close to a no-brainer given we won’t have unlimited funds. Some will bring out the ‘mum’ card when his name is mentioned but I guarantee that part is largely over exaggerated by the media simply because it’s a relative rather than an unknown agent. (Complete in Summer 2024 - free)


Other possible options / honourable mentions:

Barella (perfect but 27/28yo + potentially pricey)
Wieffer (interesting but in-demand)
Joao Neves (perfect but very young + pricey)
Kouadio Kone (quality but just back from injury)
Ugarte (perfect but probs unattainable)
Florentino Luis
Jobe Bellingham
Vermeeren
Zambrano
Moscardo


I haven’t included any 10s in there at all as I don’t see us adding someone there whilst we have Bruno and Mount. Maybe in 2025 we will be looking to cash in on Bruno or replace Mount if he continues to underwhelm. At which point I expect options like Wirtz to have moved on so I would love us to monitor Alex Scott at Bournemouth and make a big push for him provided he avoids injuries and develops as he should.
 

bosnian_red

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I think, the worst thing we can do is trying to make this task harder than it should be by expecting to find ONE player that has all those characteristics. The actual task is finding a working midfield - and to build that, we have to look at the available players and how much they fit into a midfield that we want. As hard as that sounds, if Casemiro doesn't have the legs anymore, he shouldn't be planned with. Same, to a different degree, applies to Bruno too. His passing is good and he certainly knows how to look busy but most players in his position on the pitch have significantly better close-control and potentially more tactical awareness.
To come up with a plan isn't an easy trait... So many of our players have at least one significant flaw... Honestly, the only one I consider to have the skillset to be a longterm option is Mainoo and he is 18 and shouldn't be under such pressure.


Do you mean, start with one of Casemiro or Mainoo? Do you consider them comparable players?
I think Casemiro and Mainoo as a double pivot and Bruno in front is the best midfield we can put out, and actually quite nice (provided Casemiro can get fit). I refuse to believe he's declined so much, where last season he was a one man midfield to close everything down, that now having Mainoo next to him wouldn't be enough for him to still be a top player. On paper it's very nicely balanced. Needs to be instructed properly of course, but I think it's a midfield that could work at a good level for a few years. So behind them you need like for like swaps, that's why I'm thinking something like Eriksen for Mainoo is fine short term, and Andre for Casemiro (never watched him, but the idea).
 

Invictus

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How do we want to structure the midfield department, and what “style of football” do we want to nurture (under this management or a new one)? Unfortunately, it's not as straightforward as signing Midfielder A, B and C, and expecting them to work something out among themselves. If you don't have a consistent identity, integration methodology, set of principles (functional, stylistic or otherwise) and overarching framework in mind, you are not going to construct a high caliber midfield in all likelihood (and to make matters worse, you might end up with an expensively assembled chimeric creature with qualities that align with disparate approaches...where the whole is even lesser than the sum of maladjusted parts). Do we want to commit to a long term project (where we painstakingly develop extremely talented but rough-around-the-edges individuals and consequently the collective) or do we want to sign players who are close to the finished article (and more likely to hit the ground running, even if they don't necessarily boast the highest potential)? Another key consideration: should we sell Bruno Fernandes while he retains decent market value (he is going to turn 30 in a few months, and this might be our last big opportunity to recoup a decent chunk of the fee we paid to Sporting CP), and use those funds (with the possible addition of Mount) to procure the components for a proper 4—3—3, with them being replaced by more evasive and press-resistant No. 10/8 hybrids (like Ødegaard or Bernardo, for example), or do we think they are the ideal spearheads for our midfield-of-the-future?
  • In a general sense, Gabriel Moscardo is an appealing prospect, for most clubs (not just Manchester United). He's along the lines of Bruno Guimarães or Declan Rice — someone who can operate as a two way box-to-box midfielder or as a no-nonsense central defensive shield. Exemplifies the rough-around-the-edges profile, though; only 18 years old and far removed from a consistently high level. But the prospect of him and Kobbie Mainoo linking up and maturing as a tandem is just so exciting! Federico Redondo is another one from the South American continent, but he's like a poor man's Busquets in terms of profile, probably more suited to La Liga.
  • Martin Zubimendi could be an option, too — as a holding midfielder or No. 8, he could bring some composure and intelligence to a midfield that seems lacking in both aspects. Not the most athletic or physically robust individual though, so adjustments will have to be made, and you can't just throw him to the wolves as a single pivot without adequate support around him (he just won't be able to deal with the gruelling explosiveness of the Premier League on his own). Like Moscardo, the prospect of him linking up with Kobbie Mainoo is quite exciting (both of them are intelligent, technically sound operators and could strike up a mutually beneficial understanding).
  • Warren Zaïre-Emery's contract expires next summer, apparently. Definitely won't be sold this summer (and there's a 99% chance that he renews his contract), as he is to Paris Saint-Germain what Mainoo is to United — a youngster who seems mature beyond his years in terms of decision-making on the pitch, and can do just about everything. But we must pull out all stops if there's even a remote opportunity to land him on a free transfer, you can easily envision him as an elite No. 8.
  • Nicolò Barella could be an obvious and wonderful signing as a pint-sized dynamo who ceaselessly drives the team forward and is still relatively young, but he is unlikely to leave Internazionale. João Neves is not as good of a ball carrier, but otherwise offers a lot of similar-ish qualities (and might develop into a superior passer in all ranges, as a No. 6 or as a No. 8). But he is going to be extremely expensive, while falling into the rough-around-the-edges category. Pablo Barrios could be an alternative as well, he appears to possess a lot of the right qualities as a playmaking midfielder and receives harsh training under Simeone.
  • While we undoubtedly (desperately?) need reinforcement in the mercato, and should definitely consider the aforementioned midfielders (among others, including the likes of Baturina or Simons as Bruno/Mount's prospective replacements), we should leave the door open for the likes of Jack Fletcher and Jayce Fitzgerald (they could be in-house solutions over the coming years, much like Mainoo). Good things come to those who wait, or something along those lines (that's the mantra these days anyway, the objective near-term outlook of Manchester United's midfield is rather dispiriting).
 

OleGunnar20

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Assuming Casemiro leaves I think we'll need two midfielders imminently. I'd love to see these two brought in, though Benfica in particular will no doubt hold out for crazy money:

Joao Neves - A proper all round midfielder. Comfortable on the ball, progresses it well, works hard and despite being small tackles and even wins headers really well. He's the anti McTominay in how available he always is for the pass out of defence and how good he is at progressing it, through both passing and dribbling. I could see him and Mainoo developing into a really exceptional midfield base. Price will no doubt be the main issue here.

Andre - Strong, technically sound defensive midfielder. Would work brilliantly as our #6 if Casemiro was to leave (he's lined up as his successor in then national team I think) and can also fill in at centre back when needed. Rumours of a ~£40m or so price tag, which would be an absolute steal if true.

Assuming Eriksen, Casemiro, McTom & DVB leave that would have us lining up like:

Andre / Mainoo - Neves / Mejbri
Bruno / Mount

Lots of interchangeable pieces there to shift around. You can go more defensive, more attacking, more possession based etc etc. It'd be a very versatile midfield with a good upside in terms of average age.
 

Roboc7

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I like the look of Neves but once again it would be spending all the money one way player and then having to keep all the same players. Take this opportunity to have a clear out and start again. Mctominay, Casemiro and Hannibal should be sold, Amrabat goes back to Fiorentina.

Like the look of Vemeeran and he wouldn’t cost silly money. Need a physical presence as well so someone like Fofana or Onana or even go for a cheaper up and coming option like Baleba. Thuram looks like an exciting player and Andre could be bought fairly cheap to add depth. Would take a punt on Bergvall (possibly on way to Barca though) or Nypan as could be bought fairly cheap.
 

Isotope

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How do we want to structure the midfield department, and what “style of football” do we want to nurture (under this management or a new one)? Unfortunately, it's not as straightforward as signing Midfielder A, B and C, and expecting them to work something out among themselves. If you don't have a consistent identity, integration methodology, set of principles (functional, stylistic or otherwise) and overarching framework in mind, you are not going to construct a high caliber midfield in all likelihood (and to make matters worse, you might end up with an expensively assembled chimeric creature with qualities that align with disparate approaches...where the whole is even lesser than the sum of maladjusted parts). Do we want to commit to a long term project (where we painstakingly develop extremely talented but rough-around-the-edges individuals and consequently the collective) or do we want to sign players who are close to the finished article (and more likely to hit the ground running, even if they don't necessarily boast the highest potential)? Another key consideration: should we sell Bruno Fernandes while he retains decent market value (he is going to turn 30 in a few months, and this might be our last big opportunity to recoup a decent chunk of the fee we paid to Sporting CP), and use those funds (with the possible addition of Mount) to procure the components for a proper 4—3—3, with them being replaced by more evasive and press-resistant No. 10/8 hybrids (like Ødegaard or Bernardo, for example), or do we think they are the ideal spearheads for our midfield-of-the-future?
  • In a general sense, Gabriel Moscardo is an appealing prospect, for most clubs (not just Manchester United). He's along the lines of Bruno Guimarães or Declan Rice — someone who can operate as a two way box-to-box midfielder or as a no-nonsense central defensive shield. Exemplifies the rough-around-the-edges profile, though; only 18 years old and far removed from a consistently high level. But the prospect of him and Kobbie Mainoo linking up and maturing as a tandem is just so exciting! Federico Redondo is another one from the South American continent, but he's like a poor man's Busquets in terms of profile, probably more suited to La Liga.
  • Martin Zubimendi could be an option, too — as a holding midfielder or No. 8, he could bring some composure and intelligence to a midfield that seems lacking in both aspects. Not the most athletic or physically robust individual though, so adjustments will have to be made, and you can't just throw him to the wolves as a single pivot without adequate support around him (he just won't be able to deal with the gruelling explosiveness of the Premier League on his own). Like Moscardo, the prospect of him linking up with Kobbie Mainoo is quite exciting (both of them are intelligent, technically sound operators and could strike up a mutually beneficial understanding).
  • Warren Zaïre-Emery's contract expires next summer, apparently. Definitely won't be sold this summer (and there's a 99% chance that he renews his contract), as he is to Paris Saint-Germain what Mainoo is to United — a youngster who seems mature beyond his years in terms of decision-making on the pitch, and can do just about everything. But we must pull out all stops if there's even a remote opportunity to land him on a free transfer, you can easily envision him as an elite No. 8.
  • Nicolò Barella could be an obvious and wonderful signing as a pint-sized dynamo who ceaselessly drives the team forward and is still relatively young, but he is unlikely to leave Internazionale. João Neves is not as good of a ball carrier, but otherwise offers a lot of similar-ish qualities (and might develop into a superior passer in all ranges, as a No. 6 or as a No. 8). But he is going to be extremely expensive, while falling into the rough-around-the-edges category. Pablo Barrios could be an alternative as well, he appears to possess a lot of the right qualities as a playmaking midfielder and receives harsh training under Simeone.
  • While we undoubtedly (desperately?) need reinforcement in the mercato, and should definitely consider the aforementioned midfielders (among others, including the likes of Baturina or Simons as Bruno/Mount's prospective replacements), we should leave the door open for the likes of Jack Fletcher and Jayce Fitzgerald (they could be in-house solutions over the coming years, much like Mainoo). Good things come to those who wait, or something along those lines (that's the mantra these days anyway, the objective near-term outlook of Manchester United's midfield is rather dispiriting).
Well. If we change the midfield structure, we'd need to change the attacking structure also. Going with 4-3-3 with CMs more of controlling the midfield, our front attackers have to be more creative themselves, just like Liverpool, Brighton, or past years Madrid. So more players will be needed. Hojlund isn't a creative striker, so you'd need that even more from the wingers. Well,..

I don't mention City because KdB is as 'wasteful' as Bruno also, instead of keep the ball ticking type of 4-3-3 CM.
 
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Mwooyo

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No we dont need 3 new midfielders...we bought the wrong midfielders. In the summer, we needed a 6 and an 8...we wasted money signing mount who can only play as an 8 or an average 10...and then amrabat who can only play as an 8 and a very average 6. We handled it all wrong...we ought to have signed one player who can cover both positions that we were lacking at. For example, signing someone like ruben neves would have meant we dont need to get mount or Amrabat. That one signing would have allowed us to also get rid of one of fred or mctominay. Casemiro, eriksen, mainoo, fred and ruben neves. Same exact thing in the defence...we dont need a rb and a rcb...we need one player who can easily cover both... someone like todibo.

This is why recruitment should be based on profiles and the manager should just concentrate on defining the profiles rather than highlighting specific players he wants. ETH asking for specific players like de jong or Anthony is actually a huge Red flag...this is why we had sudden huge pivots in our recruitment in the previous summer windows e.g going from de jong to casemiro and over paying Anthony

I think that we need specialists more in the attacking areas more than in defense. For example, I actually think we need world class wingers more than anything. All manutd teams that have archieved anything of note where built on dangerous wingers...we have Anthony and rashford who are sooo bad they would not get into any of our old teams. Garnacho and Amad will be good in the future but they need to learn from the best.

Getting top tier one on one wingers and crossers like olise and kvara would immediately make us world class and allow us to straight up get rid of rashford, Anthony, sancho etc. What surprises me is to hear manutd being linked to strikers like toney or guaressy etc. Until we fix our supply routes (wingers)...I think most strikers will struggle to get chances in this system. We can target a striker, if we have fixed our supply routes

Tldr: We keep signing the wrong kind of players and we are doing this in bulk. We need to get players who can easily cover multiple positions at once in midfield and defense rather than these 2 or 3 players who will not do much for us
 
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devilish

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The entire midfield need a revamp. We need a DM on top of his game who would act as mentor to Mainoo. We need a hardworking deep lying playmaker and we need a RW who focuses more on creating chances then on scoring them.
 

Invictus

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Well. If we change the midfield structure, we'd need to change the attacking structure also. Going with 4-3-3 with CMs more of controlling the midfield, our front attackers have to be more creative themselves, just like Liverpool, Brighton, or past years Madrid. So more players will be needed. Hojlund isn't a creative striker, so you'd need that even more from the wingers. Well,..

I don't mention City because KdB is as 'wasteful' as Bruno also, instead of keep the ball ticking type of 4-3-3 CM.
Aye, as well as the defensive structure. Genuinely reforming Manchester United (on and off the field) is a humungous undertaking, not for the faint of heart — and Ratcliffe and co. definitely have their work cut out for them. The entire collective, from front to back, is in need of extensive surgery and reconfiguration, which can only be done over the course of multiple seasons, even if all of the processes (from identification to recruitment to coaching and development) are consistently spot on (which isn't a given, obviously). We should set realistic targets with a 2-3 year timeframe where we progressively turn things around; a hasty and half-hearted window dressing job is unlikely to cut it and will merely perpetuate the boom-bust cycle — and we're certainly not going to optimize the midfield (or the attack or the defense) in just one summer mercato. A bit like Arsenal, who are enjoying the results of wide-spread and meaningful restructuring — if I recall correctly, almost all of the players who made the 2020 FA Cup Final (which was actually not that long ago), including subtitutes, are gone!

P.S. Yep, this is the squad from that final. And doesn't even include the likes of Özil, Mkhitaryan, Gouendouzi, Chambers or Mustafi.

 

Mainoldo

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Casemiro can stay. Mainoo next to him just change the number 10. Lucas Pacqueta will do and a decent back up like Onana from Everton.

It’s really not a hard fix. We need to focus on them crappy attackers we have.

Bruno and McTominay sales can fund the midfield. Sell Mount if you have to as well. He definitely cannot wear the 7 in this reboot.
 

luke511

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How do we want to structure the midfield department, and what “style of football” do we want to nurture (under this management or a new one)? Unfortunately, it's not as straightforward as signing Midfielder A, B and C, and expecting them to work something out among themselves. If you don't have a consistent identity, integration methodology, set of principles (functional, stylistic or otherwise) and overarching framework in mind, you are not going to construct a high caliber midfield in all likelihood (and to make matters worse, you might end up with an expensively assembled chimeric creature with qualities that align with disparate approaches...where the whole is even lesser than the sum of maladjusted parts). Do we want to commit to a long term project (where we painstakingly develop extremely talented but rough-around-the-edges individuals and consequently the collective) or do we want to sign players who are close to the finished article (and more likely to hit the ground running, even if they don't necessarily boast the highest potential)? Another key consideration: should we sell Bruno Fernandes while he retains decent market value (he is going to turn 30 in a few months, and this might be our last big opportunity to recoup a decent chunk of the fee we paid to Sporting CP), and use those funds (with the possible addition of Mount) to procure the components for a proper 4—3—3, with them being replaced by more evasive and press-resistant No. 10/8 hybrids (like Ødegaard or Bernardo, for example), or do we think they are the ideal spearheads for our midfield-of-the-future?
  • In a general sense, Gabriel Moscardo is an appealing prospect, for most clubs (not just Manchester United). He's along the lines of Bruno Guimarães or Declan Rice — someone who can operate as a two way box-to-box midfielder or as a no-nonsense central defensive shield. Exemplifies the rough-around-the-edges profile, though; only 18 years old and far removed from a consistently high level. But the prospect of him and Kobbie Mainoo linking up and maturing as a tandem is just so exciting! Federico Redondo is another one from the South American continent, but he's like a poor man's Busquets in terms of profile, probably more suited to La Liga.
  • Martin Zubimendi could be an option, too — as a holding midfielder or No. 8, he could bring some composure and intelligence to a midfield that seems lacking in both aspects. Not the most athletic or physically robust individual though, so adjustments will have to be made, and you can't just throw him to the wolves as a single pivot without adequate support around him (he just won't be able to deal with the gruelling explosiveness of the Premier League on his own). Like Moscardo, the prospect of him linking up with Kobbie Mainoo is quite exciting (both of them are intelligent, technically sound operators and could strike up a mutually beneficial understanding).
  • Warren Zaïre-Emery's contract expires next summer, apparently. Definitely won't be sold this summer (and there's a 99% chance that he renews his contract), as he is to Paris Saint-Germain what Mainoo is to United — a youngster who seems mature beyond his years in terms of decision-making on the pitch, and can do just about everything. But we must pull out all stops if there's even a remote opportunity to land him on a free transfer, you can easily envision him as an elite No. 8.
  • Nicolò Barella could be an obvious and wonderful signing as a pint-sized dynamo who ceaselessly drives the team forward and is still relatively young, but he is unlikely to leave Internazionale. João Neves is not as good of a ball carrier, but otherwise offers a lot of similar-ish qualities (and might develop into a superior passer in all ranges, as a No. 6 or as a No. 8). But he is going to be extremely expensive, while falling into the rough-around-the-edges category. Pablo Barrios could be an alternative as well, he appears to possess a lot of the right qualities as a playmaking midfielder and receives harsh training under Simeone.
  • While we undoubtedly (desperately?) need reinforcement in the mercato, and should definitely consider the aforementioned midfielders (among others, including the likes of Baturina or Simons as Bruno/Mount's prospective replacements), we should leave the door open for the likes of Jack Fletcher and Jayce Fitzgerald (they could be in-house solutions over the coming years, much like Mainoo). Good things come to those who wait, or something along those lines (that's the mantra these days anyway, the objective near-term outlook of Manchester United's midfield is rather dispiriting).
Moscardo looks some player :eek: great suggestions. I really liked the look of Redondo too when playing for Argentina youth recently, I’m surprised he hasn’t been picked up yet.

The thought of us having a new midfield set up, that doesn’t have to bow down to Bruno’s strengths and weaknesses, is an exciting prospect. I hope we get it right this time.
 

Bwuk

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Was really impressed with Joao Gomes today for Wolves
 

luke511

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The entire midfield need a revamp. We need a DM on top of his game who would act as mentor to Mainoo. We need a hardworking deep lying playmaker and we need a RW who focuses more on creating chances then on scoring them.
I sound like a broken record with this but I think Amad is the perfect solution to our wide playmaker problem. It would be fantastic if he can stay fit and be properly integrated in the second half of the season. Him along with Greenwood, Mount and Antony as back up on the right should be enough for next season. If that doesn’t work out then it could be one for the following summer.
 

Andycoleno9

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We need only 2. First 11 central midfielder who can dictate tempo and another player like that as backup.
 

luke511

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We need only 2. First 11 central midfielder who can dictate tempo and another player like that as backup.
If we’re keeping hold of Casemiro. If he’s sold (it’s looking likely) then we need another on top of that.
 

glasgow 21

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We need 3 New CB who do we sign
We need 3 need forwards who do we sign.
 

DWelbz19

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Two or three new no.8s who can pass the ball, play a little bit under pressure, and have some mobility to get up and down the field is definitely needed. Ideally we just wipe away what we have and start afresh, keeping only Mainoo and maybe one of Casemiro and one of Fernandes/Mount.
 

redmeister

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Lo Celso all day long. He's the best Argentinian midfielder. His Spurs career is simply bizarre. He should be starting for a massive club, not playing a bit part at Spurs.
 

RatPack

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Dont know who to get but need 3 that fits the setup wanted.

Keep Eriksen and Mainoo for the bench and get rid of the rest. Could also keep Bruno for the bench but think he will cause problems then.

I would love to play a 6 with 2 real 8 in front of him.
 

AFC NimbleThumb

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I said properly address this last Summer instead of insisting on buying ‘a striker’ in a market where Kane wasn’t happening & no other striker was available. There were a number of midfielders available last Summer, we bought Mason fecking Mount & Amrabat, terrible business.
 

Red_Orchestra

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A partnership of Martin Zubimendi, Andre Trindade and Moscardo would be very nice to watch.
We need some dribblers in the midfield who can hold and carry the ball.

Plus all three would cost around £110m