The legendary Paul Scholes retired from the beautiful game at the end of last season leaving behind memories of his hard tackles and extraordinary screamers. He scored a total of 155 goals in 718 appearances for United's senior team and his most memorable goal was against Barcelona in the second leg of the 2008-09 Champions League semi final .
Scholes was often considered as a "fighter" by fellow team-mates Wayne Rooney, Ryan Giggs and David Beckham. He never gave up and always wanted the ball a bit more than the possessor and went hard in his sliding tackles.
But after his retirement, new manager David Moyes has struggled to bring in recruits who can replace him. United missed out on top targets like Cesc Fabregas, Thiago Alcantara and Kevin Strootman. But they're still searching for a new central midfielder much like Scholesy,who can dictate the play and deliver long balls out towards the flanks.
A player like him will also reduce the burden on Michael Carrick's shoulders,who has to control the heart of the United's play himself. Here are some possible replacements for Scholes...
1. Marouane Fellaini
The afro haired Belgian is rumored to exit Everton and join his former mentor David Moyes. But so far Everton manager Roberto Martinez has done well to hold on to his prized asset.
The 25 year old has so far scored 32 goals in 174 appearances for Everton after playing for three years for his former Belgian club-Standard Liege. In his time in England he has become well known for his large hairstyle, becoming a cult hero with Everton fans regularly sporting wigs as a homage to Fellaini.
He can also play the role of a second striker and being so versatile, he can provide support to the midfield. In the last season's opening game against United, he had scored a brilliant headed goal to help Everton win 1-0. He has scored 7 goals in 42 appearances for Belgium.
2. Luka Modric
The Croatian is rumored to be unsettled at Real Madrid after interest from Man United and former club Tottenham Hotspur. Some sources say that Modric has told his teammates that he may leave Madrid this summer.
Moreover, he was said to be keenly interested in a move to Old Trafford. Modric has only scored four goals in 54 appearances for Madrid and has not been given enough consideration. His neat passing and good brain in the midfield along with composure gives his team confidence and in turn, makes his teammates also play well.
Papers say that Madrid have rejected a bid by Tottenham for Modric earlier only because the 27 year old is only interested in moving to Man United. United do need these kinds of players who can operate as box-to-box midfielders, attacking midfielders and sometimes as a winger as well.
3. İlkay Gündoğan
He is considered to be one of the most creative young playmakers in the world and Borussia Dortmund are lucky to have this kind of youngster. Having previously played for VfL Bochum and FC Nürnberg,Gündoğan was a central figure in Dortmund's 2011–12 Bundesliga triumph.
Usually a play making central midfielder, Gündoğan is best known for his passing game and technical qualities. He has also been targeted by clubs like Arsenal,Chelsea and of course -Man United.
The coveted midfielder has scored 10 goals in 84 appearances for Dortmund, he has not played much for Germany but still has scored 2 goals in 8 appearances. The 22 year old has been brought up well by his former clubs but largely by Dortmund and he has shown what a class act he is. Man United will be desperate to catch hold of such a player after signing Shinji Kagawa last summer.
The hunt is still on and who knows? Maybe a deal could be on the cards.
The 27 year old Frenchman had said that "it would be dream could true to play for United." And the Manchester club has shown keen interest in him. He has a pretty massive role to play in his Newcastle United side and is a key member of the squad. He has scored 11 goals and has 11 assists to his name in Newcastle after 73 appearances.
As a part of LOSC Lille, he was a highly coveted midfielder and had helped Lille to win the 2011 Coupe de France . Arsenal had reportedly made a bid to sign him but it was soon rejected by Newcastle.United will have a place for in the line up, replacing Tom Cleverley who hasn't been up to scratch . He can chip in with both goals and assists and can seriously help United retain the Champions crown ,if bought...
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