With “silly season” in full swing, the list of top European players not linked with a move to Manchester United this summer might well be shorter than the list of those who have.
The level of Louis van Gaal‘s spending power dwarves that of most other managers, so it is of little wonder that he is being mooted to have an interest in nearly every man and his dog.
But it seems highly likely that there is a good deal of transfer business still to be done at Old Trafford this summer. Every United fan has a view on who the club should try to sign and these three names are probably on most of their lists.
One of the best midfielders in Europe after having a brilliant World Cup and then helping Juventus to a Serie A and Coppa Italia double last season, Pogba is a player nearly every United fan regrets saying goodbye to.
Sir Alex Ferguson seemed unconcerned when Pogba opted not to sign a new contract in 2012, claiming the player had disrespected the club. But how United fans wish things had turned out differently, now that Pogba is one of Europe’s hottest properties and seems set to choose Barcelona out of the host of clubs chasing his signature this summer.
The world’s most expensive player has been rumoured to have had enough of the jeering he has received at the Santiago Bernabeu in the last 12 months. His electrifying pace and power on the wing would certainly be a welcome addition to Van Gaal’s squad.
Some United fans feel the team has never adequately replaced Ryan Giggs and see Bale as the ideal fellow Welshman to carry his legacy in the Van Gaal era.
However, while Van Gaal wrangles with Real Madrid over a potential swap deal involving United goalkeeper David De Gea and Real defender Sergio Ramos, other clubs are circling around Bale like vultures, including a certain Manchester outfit who play in blue.
Bale has already been pictured meeting Manchester City CEO Ferran Soriano at the New York derby match in the MLS, prompting speculation that a move to the Etihad Stadium is looming for the former Tottenham star, rather than one to Old Trafford.
— New York City FC (@NYCFC) June 28, 2015
With De Gea seemingly certain to depart Old Trafford this summer, signing a goalkeeper to replace him is high on Van Gaal’s to-do list.
Next season’s Premier League betting has United generally at 5/1 for the title but an inadequate appointment between the posts could have a negative impact on their chances of breaking into the top three.
Recent reports suggest that Van Gaal is going to opt for squad player Victor Valdes as the solution, but if that spells an end to the club’s interest in Spurs goalkeeper Hugo Lloris then many fans will be disappointed.
The France captain has the requisite class and experience at the top level to step straight into De Gea’s place, whereas Valdes could prove a risky option, despite the promise he showed when tested last season.