According to La Stampa, as cited by Mirror, Juventus chief Fabio Paratici has flown to London to hold talks with Manchester United officials. It is believed that three players in Paul Pogba, Merih Demiral and Mario Mandzukic will be on the agenda in the meeting as both the clubs look to sort out their respective futures. In this article, we will discuss the ideal scenario Manchester United can negotiate in this reported meeting.
Merih Demiral: Should United sign him?
Demiral is among one of the most promising centre-backs in Italy right now. But, the defender has struggled with lack of game-time under new manager Maurizio Sarri, who still prefers the ageing Leonardo Bonucci. As a result, Demiral has appeared keen to leave Turin if his game-time does not improve before the start of the January transfer window.
From Man United’s perspective, the Turk could prove to be a good signing given their chronic lack of quality centre-backs. One would argue Phil Jones isn’t quality enough to help the club in any form while Marcos Rojo and Eric Bailly have struggled with injuries and lack of form.
As a result, Victor Lindelof and new signing Harry Maguire remain their only reliable options at the heart of the backline. Demiral, in that regard, will provide additional competition in that slot while his physical attributes and aggression are tailor-made for the nature of the Premier League.
What about Pogba?
Pogba emerged as a key player for Man United under Ole-Gunnar Solskjaer in the early days of his spell. However, lack of form and injuries derailed his progress during the end phase of the last campaign. And it has pretty much been the same story in this new season, with the Frenchman mustering only 450 minutes of league football.
Pogba is currently nursing an ankle injury, with no definite date set for his potential return. As a result, United have had to rely on the underwhelming Fred. But, it won’t be a bad idea to ditch Pogba in January in an attempt to sign two or three new faces and reshape the midfield unit.
United are in desperate need of players who can provide not only creativity but also experience. And Pogba’s departure, to that end, should help them fund move for a potential overhaul in the midfield department.
Is Mandzukic a viable target?
Manchester United’s failure to sign a replacement for Romelu Lukaku in the summer has come back to haunt them this season, with the club lacking a proper goalscorer. Mandzukic, to that end, is likely to be considered as a short-term replacement for the Belgian, who is currently playing for Inter Milan.
Mandzukic has experience at the highest level of football, having played at clubs like Juve, Bayern Munich and VfL Wolfsburg. Besides, his robust and aggressive style of play would suit well with the Premier League – making him an ideal number nine for the Red Devils, at least till the remainder of the campaign.
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