Although it appears that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s tenure at Man United could soon be coming to an end, it shouldn’t stop the Red Devils from pursuing targets that they’ve had in mind for a while.
The Old Trafford outfit continue to struggle in defence, and that was never better evidenced than when Demba Ba was allowed to waltz through a non-existent back four to give Istanbul Besaksehir the lead in their Champions League tie.
To that end, getting a world class centre-back in during the January or summer 2021 transfer windows would appear to be almost a pre-requisite.
The Times note that United are preparing a move for RB Leipzig’s Dayot Upamecano next summer, however, his current manager, Julian Nagelsmann, thinks he still has some way to go to become the complete article.
“The mistakes he’s making are all starting the same way,” he said after their European tie against Paris Saint-Germain, cited by the Daily Mirror.
“He wants to pass the ball to the attackers right away once he’s won it. That simply does not work all the time.
“I can see a learning curve. Against Hertha, we’ve had similar situations, the same at the start of the second half against Gladbach, where we end up defending one against two players.
“He has to recognise when he can play the ball forward and when not. He is used to playing the ball forward fast to create a counter-attack.
“He grew up like this during his first year at Leipzig, when this was the main tactic. Now the next step has to come.”
Solskjaer, or whoever potentially might replace him in the United dugout, can well do without another error-prone defender.
Whether Upamecano can rid himself of the mistakes that Nagelsmann alludes to by next summer is unlikely, so it will be interesting to see if United firm up their original interest at that point.