From the moment Paul Scholes first announced his retirement from football in 2011, Manchester United have been looking for a replacement for their talisman midfielder - one who dictates the play just like Scholes did in his early days.
Now, with Scholes hanging up his boots for good, the need for that replacement is higher than ever before. Here we look at the possible replacements for Paul Scholes this season.
Thiago Alcantara | Barcelona
With his move being touted as ‘a done deal’ by many, it’s just a matter of time before Manchester United announce their latest signing.
Alcantara is still pretty young, and though he won’t straight away step into Scholes’ shoes, he’ll have the likes of Michael Carrick and newly-appointed player-coach Ryan Giggs as mentors.
Having the same creative flair and ability to pick passes which no-one can even imagine - along with a knack for goals - he could lead Manchester United’s midfield for more than a decade.
Kevin Strootman | PSV
David Moyes' predecessor, Sir Alex Ferguson, was said to have a 'gentleman’s agreement' to sign the PSV midfielder in January.
Though he is a defensive midfielder and has a bit of a different playing style to Scholes’, he is physically dominant on the ball and does not give away possession easily.
Strootman also makes his presence felt defensively and often steals the ball in crucial situations.
Cesc Fabregas | Barcelona
After early rumours linking Moyes with a move for the Spanish midfielder, Fabregas came out to declare that he is happy at Barcelona.
But with Xavi and Andres Iniesta playing in a similar role as his, he is unlikely to get many starts next season.
If bought, he would seamlessly fit into United’s midfield - and would be reunited with former Arsenal colleague, Robin van Persie.
With Arsene Wenger also reportedly interested in re-signing his former captain, the chances of this one coming to fruition seem somewhat unlikely.
Who do you think would be a suitable replacement for Paul Scholes? Have your say in the comments box provided!
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