One of the surprising stories this summer was the sacking of various members of Sky Sport’s Soccer Saturday panel.
You can understand that Matt Le Tissier was let go following rumours that the studio was no longer big enough to accommodate his tinfoil hat, but the biggest surprise was keeping Paul Merson on.
He’s clearly someone who talks without really thinking, but his latest effort with his comments to the Daily Star are quite impressive.
While a lot of people are praising Man United for signing a promising player in Donny van de Beek, Merson is adamant that this is a panic buy:
“Donny Van de Beek looks like a panic buy at Manchester United. I don’t get it. They just spent £40m on a position where they are already strong. And how does he play with Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes.”
“You have to have someone who can play the holding role. That signing looked to me like: ‘Oh we haven’t bought anyone yet, let’s go and buy someone, who can we get?”
You could start to understand it if this was the final day of the transfer window and United were only allowed to sign one player, but it looks like he’s struggling to understand that more signings could still be on the way.
As for the actual signing of van de Beek it looks like an exciting one for the fans. He’s a completely different player to those they currently have, as he has the ability to get beyond the defence and he also has the finishing quality of a prolific striker.
The wheels almost came off for United last season when it became clear that there was no quality outside the starting XI, so they need to have some squad depth and it will also benefit them to have the option to line up in different ways.
The Dutchman looks like a brilliant addition to the squad and there’s nothing to suggest that this is the end of their summer business, but it probably won’t be the last time that Merson talks out a different part of the anatomy than the rest of us.