Manchester United’s transfer activity could be about to hot up in a big way as they’re being linked with the signings of midfield duo Bruno Fernandes and Boubakary Soumare.
The Red Devils are undoubtedly weak in that position at the moment, with Paul Pogba missing much of this season so far through injury, while the likes of Nemanja Matic, Fred and Andreas Pereira don’t look the most convincing long-term options in that department.
The Fernandes transfer rumours have been going on for some time now, but it may be that things are nearing their conclusion as the Mirror claim the Sporting Lisbon star has agreed personal terms on joining Man Utd.
Meanwhile, Soumare is being strongly linked with both United and Chelsea, with Sky Sports claiming in the video below that he will be on the move to the Premier League this month, with those two clubs in pole position…
? – "He's been described as 'Paul Pogba without the baggage'…"@SkyKaveh has all the latest as Lille's Boubakary Soumare is set to decide between Manchester United or Chelsea – plus some news from @skysports_sheth on Bruno Fernandes…?#TransferTalk pic.twitter.com/Z1yV0AcdAm
— Sky Sports News (@SkySportsNews) January 16, 2020
If United can get these two signings done, it will certainly give them a new-look midfield, and plenty of options for manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to choose from.
Assuming both players come in and are used regularly, here’s a look at how MUFC’s midfield might look like once Pogba is also back in the mix…
All three together…
Probably the most sensible option would be to get all three of these quality midfielders in the team together, most likely in the formation seen above.
Fernandes is a more attack-minded player than Pogba, so it makes sense for the Frenchman to sit alongside Soumare as the more defensive midfield two.
Soumare’s quality defensive play should also provide Pogba with freedom to go forward and join the attack too, giving him more of a box to box role that has probably proven the ideal way to get the best out of him throughout his career.
No room for Pogba…
Solskjaer could also go for something even more cautious here, with no Pogba at all and with Scott McTominay playing alongside Soumare.
This would give United a very strong-looking defensive midfield pairing, and might be useful in some big games when the Red Devils expect to have less of the ball.
Fernandes alongside Soumare
Finally, Fernandes could also drop into that deeper midfield role, which is one he’s played to good effect before.
The Portugal international can still link up play and join the attack from there, and it might benefit United to have both him and Juan Mata in the team to provide the forwards with ammunition.
United fans – how would you like to see the team line up if these two deals go through?