Manchester United were expected to continue their nine-game unbeaten run last Sunday when they took on a struggling Aston Villa who hired Unai Emery as their new manager.
Instead, Villa, capitalizing on the new manager’s infamous rebound, thoroughly outclassed the Red Devils and went on to secure a famous 3-1 victory to condemn United to their fourth defeat of the season.
Erik ten Hag’s team did not play particularly well and fatigue was a major factor behind the lackluster performance.
Wanted striker at United
The manager’s selection calls, including the decision to put Donny van de Beek in place of the suspended Bruno Fernandes, backfired spectacularly.
The loss revealed the need to strengthen in the attacking zones of the field taking into account the state of form and the history of injuries of the options that the coach has.
Manchester United have sent scouts to watch Blackburn Rovers striker Ben Brereton Diaz, although West Ham are currently leading the race to sign him. #MUFC [@FootballLeagueW]
— mufcmpb (@mufcMPB) November 8, 2022
Cristiano Ronaldo, who was last season’s top scorer with 24 goals, has only managed three goals so far and only one in the Premier League.
He seems unsuited to Ten Hag’s demands and seems like a shadow of his former self. There are also constant rumors linking the Portuguese with a move in January.
Marcus Rashford has been the team’s top scorer so far with seven goals, but has been inconsistent at best, missing many brilliant chances.
Anthony Martial’s recurring injury problems mean he has barely played a part, starting just once in the Premier League so far.
United have been linked with a wide variety of strikers, both young and old, with Joao Felix, Cody Gakpo and Eric Choupo-Moting being the latest names to be added to the list.
Ben Breretton Diaz the answer?
Another unusual, left-field name has entered the fray: Blackburn Rovers’ Ben Brereton Diaz. The Chilean has scored nine goals in the Championship so far, having netted 22 goals last season.
His impressive displays have alerted top clubs and United have sent scouts to watch him in recent weeks.
The Reds are not the only potential suitors in England with Tottenham, West Ham, Aston Villa, Crystal Palace, Brighton and Wolves also in the running.
The 23-year-old’s options also include European clubs such as Sevilla, Ajax, Union Berlin, Atalanta, Sassuolo and Salernitana.
His contract runs out next summer and there’s a high chance Diaz won’t sign an extension.
Blackburn must now decide whether to let him go for free in the summer while he helps them through their promotion this season.
Sources told 90min that “a deal of more than £10m could be enough to persuade Rovers to sell in January, despite the damage it may do to their promotional offer.”
Diaz has done well for the Championship side and has featured regularly for Chile, but whether he can pull it off in the Premier League on a consistent basis remains to be seen.
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