Manchester United have confirmed their Premier League squad numbers ahead of the 2018-19 season.
Lee Grant takes No.13, Diogo Dalot is handed the No.20 shirt and Fred will wear No.17.
That’s the new players. But some of the first-team players have new numbers, too.
The No.10 shirt previously worn by Mark Hughes, Ruud van Nistelrooy and Wayne Rooney now belongs to Marcus Rashford.
“Wearing the shirt worn by United legends, honoured,” Rashford wrote on Instagram.
Sergio Romero drops No.20 and gets No.22, while youngster Tahith Chong gets No.44.
But one change that caught the eye was Marcos Rojo switching from No.5 to No.16, previously worn by Michael Carrick.
Rojo switches to No.16
The new number clearly means something to Rojo; he wears it for the Argentinian national team.
It means the No.5 shirt remains vacant and Man United supporters hope it results in a new centre-back arriving in the January window.
Having failed to land the centre-back they so craved in the summer, Man United supporters reckon the No.5 shirt would suit a host of potential targets.
The Red Devils were linked with moves for Harry Maguire, Toby Alderweireld and Yerry Mina but a refusal to spend an excessive amount prevented them from landing any of the them.
According to The Guardian, the board also doubted that any of the names on Mourinho’s wishlist were actually better than the defenders already at the club.
That’s pretty bizarre thinking when you remember Man United’s current centre-backs include Rojo, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling.
Virgil van Dijk’s £75 million move from Southampton to Liverpool last summer has distorted the market for centre-backs.
It’s claimed that Man United were put off by the fee that Leicester demanded when they made an approach for Harry Maguire, whose performances for England at the World Cup raised his price considerably.
As for Alderweireld, the club would have needed to fork out more than £50m to sign him.
The Belgian’s contract at Tottenham expires in 2019 and so he could be available for a reduced fee in January.
And Man United already have a suitable number for him.
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