Manchester United’s summer transfer activity has been mightily impressive so far, with the Red Devils showing that they are ready to put forward a Premier League title challenge next season.
The Old Trafford outfit have been in transition for the last number of years, with Louis van Gaal given the pre-requisite of finishing in the top four last term, regardless of how it was achieved.
With this short-term objective achieved, United seemingly are ready to plan for the long-term, with a number of exciting acquisitions this off-season and the club’s fans hoping for a return to the free-flowing attacking football they became accustomed to for so many years.
As the likes of Bastian Schweinsteiger, Memphis Depay and others join Van Gaal’s contingent, a number of players will be sweating over their futures at Old Trafford.
One man who has gone through a full lifecycle at the Manchester club is Marouane Fellaini, who has been deemed as both a pariah and unlikely saviour during his two years with the Red Devils.
The giant Belgian’s role at United has not really been fully decided upon since his big-money move from Everton, with Fellaini being utilised in contrasting positions.
The experiment of having him as an enforcer in defensive midfield was botched during David Moyes’ tenure, while his presence as a second striker was deemed to be a threat to United’s style of football, due to the team going direct when he was in it.
That said, Van Gaal used Fellaini in an attacking midfield berth in the second half of last season and the lofty star repaid his manager and the club in droves with star performances.
Looking at it objectively, it is difficult to see just where the Belgium international fits into the United team next season.
Roles in attacking midfield or as a support striker are set to be hotly contested, with the likes of Depay, Angel Di Maria, Juan Mata and others hoping to secure a regular starting berth.
The experiment of playing Fellaini deeper to make use of his physical presence looks even less likely to be trialled again due to the club bolstering their options in this position over the summer.
As such, it may well be that the giant Belgian’s role next season is as an impact sub or Plan B.
If United are chasing a game, expect Fellaini’s bustling figure to be called from the bench – where he seems likely to spend most of his time in 2015-16.
But, could Fellaini be set for another potential new role?
With United allowing Robin van Persie to leave the club and Radamel Falcao’s loan stint over, Wayne Rooney is the only recognised out-and-out striker of any experience at the club.
With a plethora of wingers at Van Gaal’s disposal, is the Dutch maestro thinking about using Fellaini as an option in the striker role to get on the end of their supply?