Manchester United’s rebuild will continue this summer as Erik ten Hag looks to improve on this season’s form next season.
Former Manchester United right-back, Gary Neville has identified the four key roles Erik ten Hag needs to strengthen this summer as the Manchester United manager continues to restructure his squad.
Ten Hag will enjoy a successful debut season at United in June, with the Dutchman already bringing the money to Old Trafford in the form of the Carabao Cup and on course for a top-four finish. The Reds are third and six points clear of fifth-placed Tottenham and will also face an FA Cup semi-final against Brighton on Sunday.
But while the season has steadily improved, a number of humiliating defeats have highlighted problems within the squad that need to be addressed this summer. Ten Hag are expected to approve at least two major signings, with a world-class striker and a ball-playing midfielder topping his list.
Responding to a question from a Twitter follower about United’s needs this summer, Neville reiterated Ten Hag’s desire for a striker by adding a right-back, centre-back and goalkeeper to his list of four positions.
David de Gea is in the final months of a four-year deal he signed in 2019, with United opting for a 12-month extension in hopes of cutting his £375,000-a-week wages. But Thursday’s 3-0 defeat by Sevilla, and the final goal in particular, highlighted the Spaniard’s problems with the ball at his feet.
Reports of a new deal for the 32-year-old vary in the details, but with Dean Henderson possibly being sold and Jack Butland on loan due to his return to Crystal Palace, a new goalkeeper could be on Ten Hag’s list irrespective of what De Gea’s future holds.
United have held talks with Jeremie Frimpong to strengthen the right-back position. The 22-year-old defender has been outstanding for Bayer Leverkusen this season and could be ready for the next step in his career. Aaron Wan-Bissaka has been on the upswing since the turn of the year but is expected to go up for sale regardless, while Dalot is in talks for a new contract.
United are open to offloading Harry Maguire and Eric Bailly this summer, and Neville believes a new centre-back should bolster the ranks to compensate. Several have been linked in recent months, including Jurrien Timber, Alessandro Bastoni and Kim Min-jae.
Ten Hag’s long-standing interest in Harry Kane is well documented, with the Tottenham striker a key summer target. Besides Kane, the Reds are interested in Victor Osimhen, Randal Kolo Muani and Rasmus Hojlund.