Jose Mourinho and Carlo Ancelotti couldn’t be much more contrasting as characters.
The Portuguese boss of Manchester United is one of the true warriors of the game, an egotistical, aggressive fella who largely is out for his own gains. Carlo, on the other hand, is a far calmer, thoughtful sort of man with a ‘such as life’ attitude that sees his teams play with the sort of free spirit you can imagine him awarding them.
Any player who makes the leap from the Allianz to Old Trafford this summer will make the leap of faith from Cosy Carlo to Macho Mourinho.
The two ex-Chelsea managers might not be too keen on doing business of any kind this summer, but there are a fair few superstars at Bayern Munich that Ed Woodward will probably be looking to open is bolt-locked chequebook for.
Mourinho is set for a rough ride this season. The media will be all over him like a rash if a bad trot begins and he might benefit from signing a couple of Bayern’s gems…
One of the great love stories of recent summers for Manchester United was their unsuccessful chase of Thiago. The newspaper rumblings were eventually quashed when Thiago left Barcelona to join Pep Guardiola at Bayern.
It was hardly surprising opting to play with Robben and Ribery ahead of Young and Valencia, mind. However, Thiago is one of the very best midfielders in Europe right now and could be the missing piece of United’s jigsaw.
Comfortable playing as a six, eight or 10, Thiago would give Mourinho options throughout the midfield. He can pass through the lines unlike any other player on the squad at the moment, too.
The arrival of Mats Hummels to partner Jerome Boateng at centre-back further pushes Javi Martinez away from the Bayern Munich starting XI.
The Spaniard has been one of the most undervalued players for several seasons now and would hugely benefit from a move where he could become not only a regular starter, but a key player in the team’s longer-term plans. Injuries have, unfortunately, plagued much of Martinez’s Bayern career, although a move to United could be seen as the chance for a fresh start.
Martinez would likely play as the number six in a Mourinho side, yet he could slot in alongside Smalling if Bailly struggles to adapt.
If the Paul Pogba move doesn’t go through, Arturo Vidal would be a reasonable, cheaper alternative to the French star.
Having been used in a deeper role since moving to Bayern, Vidal can play in almost any midfield position if required. Whether needed to screen the defence or slot in as a shadow striker, the Chilean still has the legs and tactical nous to complete any role to a world class standard.
At 29, Vidal will only have a couple of years left before he will need to start adapting his game, although this could see him develop in to a yet more rounded midfielder.