Compared to last season, Manchester United appear to have improved in most respects and the results show that the team is on course to finish in the top four.
Erik ten Hag has unified a broken locker room and at the same time built a pattern of play that his players are slowly but surely adapting to.
The Dutchman’s summer recruits have played a big part in his upturn in form, while he has also rejuvenated previously underachieving stars.
United striker problems
One aspect of the squad that has disappointed the new coach is the wastefulness shown by the figureheads. While United have certainly created chances that can be seen in the shots taken, goals have been hard to come by.
Cristiano Ronaldo’s off-field form and behavior have proven to be the main talking points throughout the season. He has only managed one Premier League goal and has largely been seen as a shadow of his former self.
Marcus Rashford has certainly improved from last season, but his completion still needs work. His erratic and inconsistent displays haven’t helped in certain games.
🚨🌕| I’ve seen some rumors linking Memphis Depay with a return to Old Trafford, but it’s too early to say for sure. The #mufc explored him as an option in the summer, and his future is still open in January. [@FabrizioRomano, @caughtoffside]
— central devils. (@centredevils) November 10, 2022
Anthony Martial, who impressed in pre-season and looked poised to lead the line, has been out injured for the most part and that means United haven’t had a proper goalscorer this season.
The Red Devils have been linked with a wide variety of forwards, including Joao Felix, Cody Gakpo and some left field options like Eric Choupo-Moting and Ben Brereton Diaz.
Barcelona’s Memphis Depay could be the answer in January, especially after transfer specialist Fabrizio Romano confirmed his “open” status.
The former United striker was also targeted in the summer but the play did not materialize.
And according to Romano, “Memphis Depay’s future is open. There is a possibility that he will leave in January”, he wrote in his exclusive Daily Briefing for CaughtOffside.
Depay could be on the move
The Dutch attacker, however, will only ask to leave if a renowned club enters for him. And the World Cup may be the best time for him to attract potential suitors.
“The decision also depends on the proposals: he is a free agent in June, so he would only accept a top club. At the moment, they tell me that there are no negotiations with any club and that the World Cup could be an important opportunity for him,” added Romano.
Ten Hag knows the Dutchman well and that could help during the negotiations. Depay has also always maintained his desire to return to Old Trafford where he believes he has unfinished business.
Depay could be a low-cost solution if United go for him. And at this stage, with Ronaldo’s future uncertain, a striker should definitely be the main target in January.
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