Rio Ferdinand says Manchester United must go all out to sign either Kylian Mbappe or Erling Haaland this summer.
After drawing another blank against a ‘big six’ side in the Premier League on Sunday, their sixth in seven attempts, the United legend said a world class striker has to be the club’s priority.
Speaking on his FIVE YouTube channel [via The Mail], Ferdinand said ‘Cavani, yes, he’s a good stopgap but [we need] a centre-forward.
‘If people like Erling Haaland or Kylian Mbappe are available, you can’t allow them to go somewhere else and you need to move heaven and earth to get them here.
‘United are used to having superstars and those boys would change the narrative at this football club, that’s how good they are.
‘There’s room for improvement and opportunity to improve this squad, there’s players out there available, it seems. We need to be in the mix.’
Few fans would disagree with Rio but most would argue that the club no longer has the pulling power, financial clout or desire on the part of the owners to make big transfers like that happen.
Haaland has a €75 million release clause that comes into effect in June 2022, but it is expected that big clubs such as Manchester City and Chelsea will try to tempt Borussia Dortmund to sell a year early by offering amounts well in excess of €100 million. Would United’s controlling shareholders, the Glazer family, sanction that amount of money?
Mbappe, on the other hand, is known to be Real Madrid’s top summer priority and what Real want, they usually get. His fee has reportedly been set at €200 million, which is even unlikelier to be sanctioned.
The other issue, of course, is even if the Glazers were willing to stump up the fees involved, would either player want to join United? Mbappe would appear to have his heart set on Real and Haaland, whilst a family friend of Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, has already turned United down once.
Ferdinand also pointed out that United themselves also have other priorities.
‘We definitely need to buy a centre-back, a commanding centre back with pace.’
Anyone got a time machine for Rio?