Former Manchester United defender Gary Neville believes the key problem in Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s team is in midfield and it’s an area that needs to be improved through making new signings.
In the absence of Scott McTominay and Paul Pogba, Fred and Andreas Pereira were asked to play centrally in the 3-3 draw against Sheffield United last night. The pair were anonymous throughout the game, and Neville has called for reinforcements:
“The midfield’s just a problem for United full stop, let’s be clear about it. Even with Scott McTominay in it, it’s a problem. They haven’t strengthened in that area, obviously [Paul] Pogba’s injured.”
“It’s a problem for them and it’s just not good enough, the midfield just doesn’t have good enough quality. They need a striker, they need two midfield players, they need a left-back – they need five or six signings.”
“They can’t do that until January and obviously the summer but the midfield will not go away as a problem for Manchester United just because of an injury. It’s a problem full stop – it needs strengthening.”
Quite simply the quality that is available to Solskjaer in midfield is simply not good enough. The Norwegian made a massive mistake by opting against recruiting in that area before the start of the season.
Whether that error can be rectified in January, it remains to be seen. Solskjaer has hinted that the club may only look at loan deals when the transfer window reopens, but on yesterday’s evidence, the need to strengthen is urgent.
Pogba’s return next month will clearly help matters but the lack of depth in central midfield is a problem, that Neville rightly points out, won’t go away.