Manchester United have been linked with making various changes this summer, but amid plenty of speculation, their actions will be what counts at the end of the season.
Louis van Gaal’s side remain five points adrift of fourth-placed Arsenal with four games remaining this season as they continue to fight for a chance to qualify for the Champions League.
The Red Devils will also have the opportunity to win their first piece of silverware since 2013 when they take on Crystal Palace in the FA Cup final next month, and so they could still secure a strong finish to the campaign.
However, for a club steeped in such history, battling for a top-four finish and having failed in Europe is simply not good enough and that could in turn cost Van Gaal his job this summer.
According to The Sun, the club have already begun the process of bolstering the squad as they are nearing a deal for Benfica starlet Renato Sanches which could cost them up to £40million.
While that is a good move if it materialises, albeit depending on whether or not the Portuguese youngster lives up to expectations, it isn’t enough to take United to the next level.
The Metro have suggested that United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has drawn up a three-man transfer wish-list for the summer, with Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Neymar the three individuals in question.
Those are the type of names that United should be aspiring to sign, but merely talking about them and being linked with these players isn’t going to fix their problems. The club needs an aggressive summer transfer market to go out and sign one of these players who in turn can take them to the next level.
With speculation on-going with regards to the potential appointment of Jose Mourinho, this marks a crucial period for the club on various fronts. Further disappointment and lack of success will hit them both on and off the pitch, and with Pep Guardiola’s arrival at Manchester City this summer, they can’t afford to slip further behind their city rivals.
In turn, if Woodward is truly committed to giving the green-light for the club to spend big, then they have to land a marquee name that is already well established and can make an immediate difference next season with City, Chelsea, Liverpool, Tottenham and Arsenal all likely to come on strong too.
Not only will it send a message to their rivals, but it will also boost confidence and belief in all concerned at Old Trafford, as it will only add to what they have currently have with a whole host of youngsters proving to be up to the task of playing for the club.
It has been months since Mourinho was first linked to the Old Trafford hotseat, and various players have been paired with a move to the red half of Manchester too. United can’t afford for that speculation to remain mere rumour and gossip ahead of a crucial summer.