Manchester United need to open the chequebook if they hope to get back on track and start playing like the Manchester United that most people are used to.
This season they have lacked the magic of past generations, and this is because the players are simply not good enough to get the job done.
People have irrationally pointed fingers towards David Moyes as the cause for Manchester United's poor league form, citing that Sir Alex Ferguson dominantly won the league with a very similar squad last season.
But Ferguson was a unique character and is arguably the best manager of all-time, while Moyes is a man who is trying to make his mark on the footballing world and is a neophyte with these expectations.
With that in mind, it is time for Moyes to take some action in the January transfer window, and here is what he needs focus on:
First off, he needs to sell some players. A major overhaul of the squad is needed, as most of the players are nowhere near Manchester United quality.
Fabio, Alexander Buttner, Anderson, Ashley Young and Danny Welbeck all need to go. These five players could not make a mid-table squad, and somehow they are getting minutes with Manchester United. Even Welbeck, despite his current run of form, could not get into a Southampton or an Aston Villa squad. So how does he get into the Manchester United starting line up? Absolutely dreadful. These guys need to be sold immediately.
Secondly, Manchester United needs to spend money. A quality winger, a centre midfielder, and a central defender would be my priorities. Aside from Adnan Januzaj, the wide midfielders have been horrific for the Red Devils and they really need some creativity on the wings.
The service has been poor and the wingers are one-dimensional and predictable. Putting in some money for Marco Reus (Dortmund), Nicolas Gaitan (Benfica), or Juan Mata (Chelsea) would be a major boost to the Manchester United squad.
A central midfielder should also be a priority for Manchester United, however, with the return of Darren Fletcher I would have this at a lesser priority than a winger. Michael Carrick, Shinji Kagawa and Darren Fletcher look to be a solid midfield trio who can carry Manchester United to a top four finish.
All three men are quality centre midfielders, however, past those three there is not enough depth in the centre midfield position so that if one of them gets injured there is a suitable replacement for them. Signing Ander Herrera (Athletic Bilbao), Yohan Cabaye (Newcastle), or even Victor Wanyama (Southampton) would fill the gaps in the centre of the park.
Finally, a centre back is a true necessity for the Manchester United squad. Nemenja Vidic is aging, Rio Ferdinand is well past his prime, Jonny Evans is serviceable but weak, Chris Smalling is poor with the ball, and Phil Jones is too versatile for his own good. No one has cemented a role as the rock in the defense nor has anyone proved that they can shut down world class forwards every weekend.
The man that Moyes needs to bring into the center of defense has to be a world class defender who can lead the back four and man-handle opposition strikers. Benedikt Howedes (Schalke), Neven Subotic (Dortmund) and Inigo Martinez (Real Sociedad) should be the players on top of his central defender shortlist.
Although the Manchester United squad really needs a major overhaul, these are the three positions that need to be addressed quickly so that Moyes can get his team back on track for a top four finish. Anything outside of the top four could become the demise of the Manchester United dynasty.
It is time for Moyes to rid himself of the incompetent and bring in some more talent to Old Trafford.
And as the old saying goes: There's no time like the present.
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