With the arrival of Robin van Persie, United look all set to begin their chase for a 20th league title. They look strong in the goalkeeping department and back to their best at the back with the return of Nemanja Vidic. The striking options look as dangerous as they did in the treble winning season. However, the midfield still remains the centre of much debate among United fans and asks the question do we need another midfielder?
The summer has seen two young midfielders added to the squad in Nick Powell and more notably Shinji Kagawa. While Kagawa looks set to play a pivotal role this season, these are both signings for the future. Scholes and Giggs look like they are set for the last season at United, however, how often have we said that. Darren Fletcher too has resumed training and even made an appearance against Aberdeen in a pre-season friendly but still could be some way off a full return.
Anderson has been able to get a full preseason under his belt after another injury plagued season. He will be hoping to link up again with the returning Tom Cleverley which will surely excite many fans after their brilliant start to the campaign last season.
But still, that is where the main issue is, the centre of the park. There is no doubting the quality in there. The question is though, is there enough quality?
The arrival of Kagawa and the faith shown in Cleverley suggests that we have improved and addressed the issue of creativity. Even more so with Robin van Persie’s arrival, it looks like Rooney will play a deeper role in which a lot of us think he is more suited to. The wide areas are probably the strongest in the league with our player of the season, Antonio Valencia, and the left side duo of Nani and Ashley Young. It is the defensive midfield area that seems to be the missing part in many fans eyes.
Michael Carrick is the deepest lying of all our midfielders but isn’t considered as a defensive midfielder, he is considered a deep lying playmaker. However he does do a great job defensively and has an amazing interception rate. If Darren Fletcher could regain full health and fitness and return to his form of a few seasons ago, it would certainly help ease the nerves against teams who dominate possession against us, I think every United fan, wonders what could have been in those two European Cup finals against Barca if Fletcher had played. Take those two players out and the rest of our midfield options are all attack minded and that surely must be a concern.
Losing Paul Pogba to Juventus is a massive loss as many fans, including Sir Alex, saw him as the closest thing we have had to replace Roy Keane but the fact is, he has gone and we have to move on. So if United were to bring in that defensive midfield player, who do we bring in? The one man who caught the eye in his impressive performances against United last season was Javi Martinez, a technically gifted footballer who can play in midfield and at centre back. Already in the Spanish national team, the young Bilbao player is one of the most sought-after players in the world, and has recently been courted by Bayern Munich.
After his performances against us for Bilbao, I think that every United fan would welcome the signing but would United be able to tempt him to England? He seems to be attracting far greater interest from Barca and Real Madrid and in all honesty, I believe he feels his future is in Spain and not in England. After United’s spending this summer, should we look at Javi Martinez or is the price just too high, especially after our summer spending?
What are your thoughts? Is our midfield strong enough and have adequate cover for the season ahead or do we need one more signing to help get our trophy back? If we do, what type of midfielder do we need? Another attack minded, creative player or a defensive type ball winner?
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