Manchester United need to get their transfer dealings right starting with De Gea
After the disaster that was the David Moyes era which saw Manchester United slump to a seventh place finish in the English Premier League, the primary aim for new manager Louis Van Gaal was to secure a return to the Champions League. Heading into the last round of fixtures for the 2014-15 season, and United fans are celebrating a fourth place finish, which guarantees at least a place in the Champions League playoffs for next season.
Admittedly that’s not what a club of the stature of Manchester United should aim for, but in this rebuilding phase, small steps are what will ultimately count. With the summer transfer window set to open soon, manager Louis Van Gaal has already prepared fans for what will be a ‘rough transfer window’ with many significant arrivals as well as departures from the club expected to take place. United fans will definitely be hoping for some big signings by the club, and signing Memphis Depay seems to be a positive step towards building a squad that can challenge for the title next year, but they all know that he is just one piece of the puzzle.
The rumours are flying thick and fast in football circles. United are reportedly interested in Paul Pogba, Raheem Sterling, Mats Hummels and a few more top names, but the biggest signing in the offing could well be that of Gareth Bale from Real Madrid.
United had tried to sign the Welsh wizard from Tottenham in 2013, but he had turned them down for a move to Real Madrid; but after what can only be called a woeful season for Gareth Bale at Madrid, which has caused him to draw the ire of the fans and has left him disillusioned regarding his role in the club, Manchester United are once more lurking around the winger.
Time to bargain
Real Madrid have not had a great season by their lofty standards. Their below-par showing since the turn of the year has raised questions about the future of a few players at the club, namely that of their veteran keeper Iker Casillas. At 34, the 2010 World Cup Winner is not the wall he used to be in the years gone by and quite a few of his performance have cost Madrid this season. It is then, but a foregone conclusion that Madrid would be looking to replace him and the name that they seem to have decided upon is that of Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea.
It is undeniable that David De Gea is the reason Manchester United are in the top four this season. Game after game he has managed to pull out one world class save after another to keep the opposition out and gift United with valuable points. In a league featuring the likes of Thibaut Courtois and Hugo Lloris, De Gea has been miles ahead of any other keeper in the league and so it is no surprise that he has caught the attention of Real Madrid. The question though that Manchester United face is do they do everything in their power to hang on to De Gea, or do they use him as part of an exchange for Gareth Bale.
De Gea’s contract is set to expire in 2016 and that has prompted United to enter into contract talks with the player. Reports have emerged that United offered De Gea a massive 200,000 pounds-a-week contract, but the player turned it down as his heart is set on Madrid. It would not be surprising considering that De Gea is Spanish, his girlfriend is Spanish and a move back to his hometown that too with one of the biggest clubs in the world would be a dream for him. His performances this season though will have made Manchester United desperate to keep him at Old Trafford. What United need to realize is that De Gea provides them with a massive opportunity.
Reinforcing the attack
In Bale, Man Utd will be signing arguably one of the best attacking player in the world, however poor his recent form might be. Signing Bale otherwise would be a mammoth task considering his price tag and the competition other English clubs are posing, but De Gea is the ultimate bargaining chip. Real Madrid are desperate for a keeper, and have shown a certain amount of willingness to part with Bale. United are planning for the future, and if they want to win trophies, they will need a very good attacking force, unlike the massively underwhelming one of this season, which has prompted rumours that players of the likes of Robin Van Persie, Radamel Falcao and even Angel Di Maria might well be shown the door.
Bale might not have had the best of seasons, but it has to be kept in mind, that in 2014 before his injury, Bale was having a pretty good season, and there can be no doubt about the quality he possesses. He is the perfect blend of creativity and pace which United have lacked for quite some time now and provides them with the balance up front that Van Gaal has been seeking; and maybe a return home to the Premier League might just be what is needed to rejuvenate him. Depay, Rooney and Bale can morph into a very dangerous attacking trio in the Premier League, and along with the power and presence of Fellaini, and the creative inputs of Ashley Young and Juan Mata, Manchester United have a lot of potential in their squad. It is time that Manchester United get their transfers right for a promising season ahead.