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With the 2022/23 season wrapped up, the transfer window is set to open in just two days times. As per usual, the rumour mill is already in overdrive with hundreds of players across Europe being linked with moves to the Premier League.
One club that is expected to be busy this summer is Manchester United. Erik Ten Hag had a positive first season at Old Trafford, leading the club to their first trophy in six years back in February when they beat Newcastle United in the Carabao Cup final. He also successfully navigated a depleted squad to a top-four finish in the Premier League.
Despite the positives, United fans have just had to watch their neighbours, Manchester City, win the treble which will have certainly left a bitter taste in their mouths. As such, they will be desperate for their club to invest properly this summer to give Ten Hag the tools to go toe-to-toe with the champions next time around.
Neville names the key areas to improve
With United needing reinforcements, club legend Gary Neville has had his say on the priority positions that Ten Hag should be looking at if he wants to get close to Manchester City next season. For him, the time has come to replace David de Gea, whose future is up in the air, while he would also like to see Ten Hag bring in a world-class centre forward. Speaking to Metro, he said:
“You have got to start with a centre forward and a goalkeeper. If you don’t have those two positions fixed in a football team you are massively struggling.
“Manchester United are massively struggling particularly up front but it has come to the time where they have to get a top goalkeeper. That Cup final against Manchester City said it to us all. I don’t like mentioning it too much but the second goal shouldn’t have gone in the back of the net.
“The reality of it is, David de Gea has had a great career at Manchester United, he has been a fantastic goalkeeper. But now is the time for him to be challenged and get someone in to be that no1.”
🚨💰 Manchester United are ready to move for England no.1 Jordan Pickford – whether David de Gea leaves or not. @talkSPORT
— UtdPlug (@UtdPlug) June 10, 2023
If de Gea is to depart Old Trafford this season, then one name to keep an eye on is Everton goalkeeper, Jordan Pickford. The England number one has been linked with a move to United in recent days and would be keen to make the switch.
Ten Hag achieved the “maximum”
In addition to naming the areas he would like to see bolstered this summer, Neville also sent a warning to the club in case they were under any illusions that the current crop can improve further next season. He said:
“There are players who have hung around for quite a bit who have never really hit the standard but you keep thinking it might come and it doesn’t. What Erik ten Hag has done, I do think he has achieved the maximum from that squad, to get them to two cup finals and finish third in the league.
“There were a few injuries at the end as well and maybe being all competitions including the Europa League made it tough. These players have been there before, some of them were there under Ole [Gunnar Solskjaer] where you asked can they make that next step. These players can’t make that next step without significant additions.”
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