Louis van Gaal hasn’t even had his first day at Manchester United yet, but the Dutchman has apparently already made his mind up on Marouane Fellaini. According to reports last week, the £27.5 million Belgian has been deemed surplus to requirements and will be moved on this summer.
The Red Devils’ will inevitably have to accept a substantial loss on their investment and chief executive Ed Woodward will be tasked with finding a replacement. Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw have already arrived but much more transfer activity is expected at Old Trafford this summer.
Van Gaal has been focused on guiding the Netherlands to World Cup glory but will likely have had an eye on the performances of potential targets in Brazil. The competition has showcased many of the finest midfield talents, players that could help elevate the Red Devils towards the summit of the Premier League once again.
Bearing this in mind, here are EIGHT potential World Cup replacements for Fellaini at United.
With just a year left on his contract, rumours regarding Khedira’s future at Real Madrid refuse to go away. With a potential cut-price deal in the offing, Manchester United are among a host of Premier League sides linked with a move for the 27 year old this summer.
Khedira apparently going for £16mil, if we don’t get vidal, I reckon United should definitely go after him, or risk losing out again.
— Daniel (@Cobbz6) July 6, 2014
United should sign khedira need a player like that
— ((~~Curtis~~)) (@General_Curtis) July 4, 2014
A box-to-box midfielder capable of breaking up attacks and leading offensive drives, Khedira would certainly inject far more energy into the United midfield than Fellaini. For a knockdown fee, van Gaal could be hugely tempted by the prospect of pairing Khedira with Herrera next season.
If the latest reports are to be believed, United are already preparing an astonishing £40 million offer for Vidal. The Juventus midfielder racked up eleven goals and five assists in Serie A this season and was in impressive form for Chile this summer.
30mn + Nani for Vidal will be a great deal for both Juventus and United. Hope it goes through without any bummer. #mufc
— Kalmi Khajoor (@Awaez) July 6, 2014
Can’t wait for Vidal to sign for United.
— Saturn (@_SaturnVI) July 6, 2014
An all-action midfielder, Vidal would certainly add bite and creativity to a midfield lacking in both. Van Gaal is a confirmed admirer of the 27 year old and it certainly would be a stunning coup if the Red Devils could pull off a deal.
Despite his reputation and service to the club, reports suggest that Bayern Munich may be willing to part with Schweinsteiger this summer. Pep Guardiola is believed to hold concerns over the midfielder’s capability to recycle possession quick enough.
I’m happy Schweinsteiger is coming off, I want him to be fit for United’s pre season tour.
— Zac (@UnitedZac20) June 30, 2014
So Schweinsteiger fakes an injury to have a medical with Manchester United, I guess. #MUFC
— Ander & Luke (@_NanaQuophi) June 30, 2014
Although talk on the matter has cooled in recent weeks, it wasn’t long ago that many believed the 29 year old to be van Gaal’s primary transfer target this summer. Available for a reported £25 million, the Red Devils may yet still try to convince the classy German midfielder to end his career in the Premier League.
One of numerous Dutch players inevitably linked with United this summer, any move for De Jong will likely be controversial. A quick look at Twitter shows that many Red Devils fans still hold nothing but contempt for the former Manchester City midfielder.
I, personally, will feel very offended if @NDJ_Official moves to United
— Evan Woodall (@EvanWoodall) June 30, 2014
IF NIGEL DE JONG GOES TO UNITED I WILL BE THE MOST ANGRIEST PERSON EVER
— Hannah Davies (@HannahDaviesxox) July 5, 2014
At the age of 29, De Jong surely wouldn’t be part of a long term vision at Old Trafford. But the Dutchman would certainly replace Fellaini’s physicality and provide steel alongside Herrera for next season.
Fellaini’s replacement at Old Trafford could well turn out to be his international colleague. Throughout the World Cup, many United fans have lamented that David Moyes signed the wrong Belgian defensive midfielder last summer.
Man United signed the wrong fright-wigged Belgian. Witsel is superb.
— Saturnino Deerin (@chrisdeerin) July 5, 2014
Axel Witsel to United please
— James Rɔdriguez (@AkaAdot__) July 1, 2014
Composed in possession and strong in the tackle, Witsel himself has spoken of a desire to represent United at some point in his career. But having signed for Zenit for a whopping £32 million, van Gaal would likely have to spend big to prise the 25 year old out of Russian football.
A player that only broke into Sporting Lisbon’s starting eleven this season, Carvalho has enjoyed a whirlwind twelve months. A member of Portugal’s World Cup squad, the latest speculation concludes that United are seriously considering meeting the 22 year old’s release clause of £37 million this summer.
The longer United wait with approaching Vidal I believe we take one step closer to William Carvalho release clause #mufc
— Emil Manninen (@EmilManninen) July 6, 2014
25 Million + Anderson for William Carvalho would be a great deal for both United and Sporting #mufc
— Muhammad Bassa (@Bassa_UTD) June 29, 2014
As he demonstrated in his country’s playoff success over Sweden, Carvalho is highly adept at breaking up attacks and passing the ball to his more creatively minded team-mates. The valuation is certainly high but the 22 year old is deemed by most to be one of European football’s most promising midfield talents.
Unfortunately for Southampton fans, the high-profile departures from their club may not be finished just yet. Along with Dejan Lovren, Schneiderlin could be the latest player to leave St Mary’s for pastures new this summer.
If Schneiderlin wants out of Southampton, United should offer Cash and Cleverley. That way we can still buy another CM
— Scott Crossland (@ScottCrossland7) July 1, 2014
United see Herrera as the answer to their midfield?! I think Morgan Schneiderlin is more the player they need.
— Whitehouse Address (@The_W_Address) June 25, 2014
A defensive powerhouse, the 24 year old averaged 3.4 tackles and 2.1 tackles per match for the Saints in the Premier League this season. Although Arsenal currently seems to be the Frenchman’s most likely destination, Schneiderlin boasts the qualities that would certainly improve United’s midfield for the coming season.
Despite leaving United for Juventus in 2012, Pogba has almost continually been linked with a potential return to Old Trafford over the last year. The 21 year old left for more regular first team action and has since established himself as one of the most promising midfield talents in European football.
United made a mistake selling Pogba if nobody has mentioned it yet.
— The Peoples Person (@PeoplesPerson_) June 30, 2014
If United have the desire to bid over £50M for Vidal, I honestly would of preferred them to buy Pogba but I guess beggars can’t be choosers.
— (@UncleShagufta) July 6, 2014
Having been linked to both Pogba and Vidal, many United fans seemingly would prefer van Gaal to make a move for the former. The Frenchman has spoken of his love for the Red Devils despite being “disrespected”, but Juventus’ reported valuation of £60 million will likely prove far too high for any interested club this summer.