Man Utd's potential starting XI if they signed all their January transfer targets

  • Kobe Tong

Manchester United are looking to end 2019 on a high.

The nadir that was their draws with Sheffield United and Aston Villa are now in the rearview window and victories over Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City have bred a new sense of positivity.

However, it would be naive to suggest that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has finally mastered things and there are still calls for Ed Woodward to loosen his pursestrings in the New Year.

Naturally, United have already been linked with innumerable players – and The Sun have tried to wade through all the reports to imagine which targets the Red Devils would be most interested in.

And they’ve even gone one step further by envisaging just how United’s XI would look in a world where they managed to sign all their major, reported targets. Spoiler alert: It’s pretty remarkable.

GK – David de Gea

Duh. De Gea has had some wobbling moments since the 2018 World Cup, but he remains one of the best goalkeepers in the world and has been crowned United’s Player of the Year four times. 

RB – Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Signing a Crystal Palace full-back for £45 million has risk written all over it, but Wan-Bissaka has arguably been United’s best player this season and absolutely shone in the Manchester Derby.

CB – Kalidou Koulibaly

Not a window goes by without Koulibaly being linked to Old Trafford – Gazzetta believed he’s bound to leave Napoli – and his arrival would improve the Red Devils’ clean sheet record tenfold. 

CB – Harry Maguire

Give him time. Maguire is one of the Premier League’s best defenders and you can bet that his recent, improved performances will become more frequent in months and seasons to come.

LB – Luke Shaw

We’re partially surprised that The Sun haven’t selected Ben Chilwell as a potential arrival, but lest we forget that Shaw was United’s Player of the Year just last season.

CM – Saul Niguez

AS reported this week that United have a ‘very real and strong’ interest in the Atletico Madrid man who, despite likely costing a club-record fee, would instantly upgrade United’s midfield creativity.

CM – Paul Pogba

If United can get their French midfielder firing on a consistent basis and keep him away from all the transfer speculation, then picking him in the starting XI is an absolute no-brainer.

CM – Scott McTominay

Another contender for United’s best player this season, McTominay is a manager’s dream and would provide some serious steel for when Solskjaer’s men face more physical sides.

RW – Jadon Sancho

Arguably the signing that United fans would want the most. Reports that Sancho wants to leave Dortmund are multiplying by the week and the Red Devils certainly have the financial muscle to nab him.

ST – Erling Haaland

The superb 19-year-old – who has 27 goals in 19 games this season – has been linked with every European club under the sun and the Solskjaer connection could be enough to tempt him to United.

LW – Marcus Rashford 

How could a player with 13 goals by early December be left out? Rashford is proving all the doubters wrong at just 21 years old and has been incredible against the ‘top six’ sides.

GIVEMESPORT’s Kobe Tong says

First and foremost, the XI is just some speculative fun and nobody is pretending as though United would bag all four players in one month. Let’s get that out the way.

So, how many of them are realistic? In my opinion, Haaland and Sancho are definitely within the realms of possibility.

It’s foreseeable that Haaland’s links with Solskjaer could see the clubs cut a January deal that would see the Norwegian return to Red Bull Salzburg on loan for either the next six or 18 months.

As for Sancho, there are enough reports worthy of credence to suggest that he genuinely wants a new challenge and United have the resources to make Old Trafford his answer.

Making that happen in January might be a little ambitious, but you never know if the Englishman legitimately wants to seek pastures new.

As for Saul and Koulibaly? United would need some powerful fertiliser for their money tree to make one, never mind both, of those happen any time soon.

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