Sat. Oct 31st, 2020

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Pundits tell Man United what they must do on transfer deadline day

5 min read

Manchester United are expected to complete two deals on transfer deadline day, with Edinson Cavani and Alex Telles both set to arrive at Old Trafford.

In what has been a frustrating few months for supporters, Cavani and Telles will be confirmed as United players before the 11pm deadline, joining Donny van de Beek as the club’s transfer business for the summer.

A deal for Jadon Sancho is unlikely to materialise with Borussia Dortmund sticking to their £108million price tag, while Ousmane Dembele remains only a loan option.

However, there has been an outcry from the media and fans to recruit a new centre-back but United’s inability to sell their current out-of-favour selections has prevented any additions in that area.

Ahead of a busy transfer deadline, here’s a round-up of what pundits across the media are saying about United’s business.

Danny Murphy – TalkSPORT

While Danny Murphy believes United need to target a centre-back, he has also backed the Reds’ deal to sign Cavani.

The former Spurs and Liverpool midfielder argued bringing the Uruguayan in on a free transfer makes sense due to the lack of options in the current market.

He said: “The defensive issues are obviously the problem, which can be fixed by a different tactical approach to a degree but I still think they should have gone out and tried to get a top centre-half.

“I’m a big fan of Cavani, I’m not suggesting Manchester United should be pinning their hopes on him but it’s naive to think they can just click their fingers and go and get Harry Kane.

“Unless you’re going to bring someone in that you can hang your hat on at United for the next six or seven years, why waste loads of money?

“Cavani is a sensible option. Even if he plays up front and Martial goes to the right or left and Greenwood or Rashford gets left out, they can mix it up.

“They’ve got options – you need options, you can’t just rely on the front three, and that’s why Liverpool have bought Jota.

“You can’t just rely on those three even though they did well after lockdown. Cavani is a proper striker, he leads the line, occupies centre-halves and gives you a focal point.

“I don’t know how fit he is but I think the Falcao one is a bit of an odd comparison, I didn’t understand that signing after his horrendous knee injury kept him out for a long, long time.

“They expected him to come to the Premier League and hit the ground running – yes, he was fit as in he’d recovered but he was never the same player.

“I thought it was a strange bit of business but Cavani hasn’t had that issue.”

Darren Bent – TalkSPORT

Following United’s shambolic defensive display against Tottenham, Darren Bent has called for Chris Smalling to be reinstated in the squad.

He told talkSPORT: “I don’t understand why there’s such an issue as I’d have kept him. Defensively, he’s better than what they’ve got.

“He might not be the most pleasing on the ball when it comes to playing out from the back like a modern centre-half but when you want someone to actually defend, Chris Smalling is very good at doing that.

“I don’t quite understand why they’re so eager to let him walk out the door.”

Rene Meulensteen – TalkSPORT

The former United coach was heavily critical of his former employers’ work in the transfer market.

He told talkSPORT: “Obviously the Sancho deal doesn’t look like it’s happening anyway but I don’t think they need to spend that amount of money in that position.

“They’re still vulnerable at the back no matter what combination they come up with, it hasn’t worked for them. Obviously they’re going to bring Telles in, another left-back, from a league that you can’t compare with the Premier League, so he’ll need some time to bed in.

“He’s 27, which is an age where you expect players to hit the ground running. Cavani is 33, I’m not saying he’s not a proven goalscorer and it cannot work, but it sounds a little similar to when Higuain went to Chelsea.

“The Premier League is a different kettle of fish so I’m a little bit cautious to bring in a 33-year-old. Again, how will that shape United up front? As the style will change with an out-and-out striker.”

David Ginola – Sky Sports News

With Cavani set to join United today, former Tottenham star David Ginola believes the striker could provide the focal point the team needs.

He told Sky Sports: “When you are Cavani or the players who are supposed to sign for Manchester United, don’t get us wrong, they are still one of the best clubs in the world, one of the most recognised and successful clubs in the world.

“So for players like that, coming to Manchester United and making Manchester United better with them is a challenge.

“So Cavani, for example, he is the record scorer in Paris (PSG), he needs a new challenge and maybe coming to Manchester United will be a fantastic challenge for him.

“You need as many players as you can afford in your squad.

“A season in the Premier League is quite long and tough, so you need someone up front who can score goals for you.

“Edinson Cavani is the kind of player who can actually score a lot of goals for Manchester United.

“He’s a proper striker – like the old days, a proper ‘number nine’, like van Nistelrooy, like Andy Cole, players like that.”

On the defence, he added: “It’s a very, very weird season and there’s not so many players on the market now that could do the job for Manchester United, especially at the back.

“I remember when Virgil van Dijk signed for Liverpool, that was a massive signature for the club, because he made the whole difference after that, defensively.

“Manchester United needs someone like Virgil van Dijk for their club to move forward.”

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