As Radamel Falcao trotted onto the pitch as a second half substitute in the 3-0 weekend win over Hull City, it was only the sixth time Red Devils fans had seen their headline grabbing summer addition in Premier League action. The Colombian was expected to score a shed load of goals as Louis van Gaal set about securing a Champions League return, yet with injuries having played their part, the 28-year-old has just one effort to his name so far.
On loan from Monaco, there is the option to send him back to Ligue 1 in January, which may be exercised should his troublesome knee injury continue to limit his game time and impact. But with Robin van Persie also struggling, a fresh addition will be needed, so here are FIVE options out there for the Red Devils…
Already rumoured to be an ‘alternative’ to Falcao, Cavani is a genuine option. The Uruguayan has only been at PSG just over a year, yet he’s been consistently linked with moves away from the Ligue 1 champions amid talk that he cannot co-exist with talismanic team-mate Zlatan Ibrahimovic. The big Swede is more often than not the focal point of the team, which has left Cavani shunted out to the wing.
For the moment the South American is thought to be happy in Paris, but that could easily change again before 2015 kicks off, making him a genuine option. Offers of around the £50m PSG paid Napoli for him may be needed to push through a deal, yet a discount could be negotiated given that his stock has dipped since his prolific days in Italy.
Benzema has been linked with Man United since his time at Lyon, whom he left to join Real Madrid. Despite being Los Blancos’ only genuine world-class centre-forward, rumours suggest that a £40m offer will be enough to tempt Carlo Ancelotti into selling, which has led to fresh Old Trafford links.
Younger than Falcao, Benzema would certainly add another dimension to LVG’s attack, with the forward also able to occupy a wider role thanks to his pace.
Not exactly ‘like for like’, but Reus would be useful tool in the United attack. The German is available for £20m at the end of the season due to a release clause in his Dortmund contract, but a January offer of around £30m may be enough to tempt the side currently rock bottom of the Bundesliga into selling.
Reus is comfortable on either flank or in a central attacking role, with his creativity and pace lethal weapons, and traits missing from LVG’s forward line at the moment.
Maybe a tricky one to get, Muller is a player that Van Gaal is known to admire. A summer target, the German World Cup winner opted to stay at Bayern Munich (shocker), where he is considered to be a vital player and a fans’ favourite.
Although loved at the Allianz Arena, Muller is by no means a standout name, and the offer to be the focal point at United may tempt the versatile ace as he enters the peak years of his career. It is a long shot, but an option for the Red Devils.
Like compatriot Falcao, Martinez has earned his European stripes at Porto. The prolific marksman swapped Mexican football with Chiapas in 2012, and has since notched over 50 goals in 73 appearances. Some going!
His pace and power has already led to talk of suitability to the Premier League, and comments from the player himself have opened the door for a big move. Porto are known for their reluctance to do business on the cheap, so offers of £30m+ will be needed for the 28-year-old, who may be a better long-term option than the crocked Falcao.