Manchester United legend Paul Scholes says the club is not far away from the standard of Liverpool and Manchester City but needs to strengthen in two positions to catch them.
Speaking on BBC Radio Five Live (via Goal.com), Scholes said:
‘There is a big gap to close, there’s no doubt about that.
‘I really don’t think they are a million miles away. I know we spoke about four or five players but I think it’s two or three now.
‘I think you are looking at a centre-forward, a really classy goal scorer and possibly a centre-half to play next to Maguire.
‘I think Lindelof has done alright but I just think Maguire with his lack of pace at times [can get caught].
‘If he’s got a really dominant centre-half next to him like a Rio Ferdinand or Jaap Stam, who bullies centre-forwards, I think that would be a big help to the team.’
Scholes’ comments reflect a shift in priorities that has come about after United’s recent performances, where the side has been incredible going forward but less than impressive at the back.
The right wing was seen as the main priority in the summer, with Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho top of the transfer list. But Mason Greenwood’s emergence in that position has convinced Scholes along with many Man United fans that there may now be more pressing concerns elsewhere.
Maguire’s form since lockdown is certainly an area of concern and whilst some of the errors, such as those against Bournemouth yesterday, may be considered ‘blips’, the Englishman’s lack of pace is a permanent issue as Scholes says.
It could be said that the idea is to find a player who can cover for Maguire’s inadequacies because so much (£85 million) was spent on the player. Had Maguire come through the ranks or joined for a modest fee, we would possibly now be talking of finding a new partner for Victor Lindelof rather than the other way around.
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