Manchester United fans have perhaps surprisingly named Aurelien Tchouameni as the midfielder the club should make their top target in the upcoming transfer window.
It looks set to be a summer of big change at Old Trafford and United have to get all the big decisions right or run the risk of seeing their five-year trophy drought stretch on even further. The first task will be hiring a new manager to take the reins from interim boss Ralf Rangnick. The club have already started the process and hope to have their man in place by the end of the season, with Erik ten Hag and Mauricio Pochettino the leading candidates.
Whoever takes up the hot seat, they will have a big task in rebuilding a squad that could see mass departures in the coming months. Paul Pogba, Edinson Cavani, Jesse Lingard, Juan Mata and Lee Grant will all almost certainly leave when their contracts expire and several more players could follow them out of the door.
ALSO READ: Jude Bellingham transfer could help Manchester United change their image
Cristiano Ronaldo, Anthony Martial, Donny van de Beek, Dean Henderson and even Marcus Rashford have all got uncertain futures as well. So it’s got the look of a busy off-season for United.
Regardless of which players leave and which players stay, United are in desperate need of a new central midfielder. The team has been crying out for an all-action star to dominate games from the middle of the park for years but, instead, they’ve repeatedly opted to lavishly spend elsewhere.
It has proven costly as United have had to persevere with the inconsistent duo of Fred and Scott McTominay as their best partnership in midfield. Thankfully, the club seems to have finally conceded the error of their ways and it’s understood that a new midfielder has been made the top priority ahead of the summer window.
All that is left is to pick the right man for the job and United supporters have made it clear who they would like to see recruited. MEN Sport asked fans: Which central midfielder should Manchester United target in the summer transfer window?
The clear but unexpected winner with 43.7 per cent of the 6,051 votes was Monaco’s Tchouameni. That’s not to say the young Frenchman isn’t a talented player but he has beaten two names who are more regularly linked with the club.
England duo Jude Bellingham and Declan Rice have both been on United’s radar for a number of years yet they only received 29.5 per cent and 22.7 per cent of the vote, respectively. It’s understood that West Ham talisman Rice is the current top target but signing him is already difficult with the Hammers reluctant to sell and only willing to do so at an exorbitant price and then there’s the problem of United’s likely failure to qualify for the Champions League.
Not being in Europe’s top competition would probably end any chance of signing Bellingham, too, with the teenage prodigy bound to have many more suitors as he continues to shine for Borussia Dortmund. United tried to sign the 18-year-old from Birmingham City in 2020 but missed out to the German side.
United fans appear to have admitted defeat in the chase for Rice or Bellingham and have instead opted for the more attainable Tchouameni. The 22-year-old’s contract expires in 2024 and he is a very capable defensive midfielder who is great at reading the game, bringing the ball out of tight spaces and passing.
The remaining 4.1 per cent of voters opted for ‘other’ with Ruben Neves, Youri Tielemans, Joao Palhinha, Boubacar Kamara, Kalvin Phillips and Conor Gallagher all suggested.
We want your views, Reds. You can become even more involved with our Man United coverage by signing up. This will unlock a whole host of things – including joining the comments and taking part in our special Q & As, where you can speak directly to our reporters about what’s happening at Old Trafford this week and beyond.
Click here to get started.
Sign up to our United newsletter so you never miss an update from Old Trafford this season.