Manchester United could find themselves as low as 17th in the Premier League table by the end of the weekend if they lose to Everton on Saturday.
Clearly, that is unacceptable for a club of United’s stature.
And Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could pay the price by losing his job as the team’s manager.
According to the Manchester Evening News, United have made contact with Mauricio Pochettino’s representatives following back-to-back defeats against Arsenal and Istanbul Basaksehir.
The Argentine coach, who appeared on Sky Sports’ Monday Night Football earlier this week, remains out of work after Tottenham sacked him 12 months ago.
Pochettino made it clear that he’s ready to return to work, and the chance to manage Man Utd would be hard for the 48-year-old to turn down.
If Pochettino is appointed the next manager of Manchester United, next summer’s transfer window will be crucial.
But which of the current squad members should he keep – and which should he axe?
David de Gea – Keep
De Gea has failed to convince over the past couple of seasons but has performed reasonably well at the start of the current campaign. It’s not the right time to move him on.
Dean Henderson – Keep
United’s current back-up ‘keeper and potential future No. 1.
Sergio Romero – Keep (if possible)
If Romero is prepared to be United’s third-choice goalkeeper, then great, keep him. But that’s very unlikely.
Lee Grant – Offload
The guy’s 37 and never plays. Better to give his position to a younger, up-and-coming goalkeeper.
Victor Lindelof – Sell
Not good enough to be one of Man Utd’s first-choice centre-backs, unfortunately.
Eric Bailly – Sell
Decent on his day but far, far too injury-prone.
Phil Jones – Sell
No explanation required.
Harry Maguire – Keep
It’s debatable whether Maguire should be Man Utd captain, but the 27-year-old is a good centre-back.
Luke Shaw – Keep
Pochettino worked with Shaw at Southampton, where the full-back made his name. The Argentine coach could help to bring the best out of the inconsistent England international.
Timothy Fosu-Mensah – Keep
He’s still young and certainly has lots of potential.
Alex Telles – Keep
From the little we’ve seen of Alex Telles so far, the Brazilian left-back could become a top player for Man Utd.
Aaron Wan-Bissaka – Keep
Still only 22, the best is still to come from the right-back.
Brandon Williams – Keep
You need a couple of Mancunians in the squad, and the 20-year-old always gives his all for the shirt.
Axel Tuanzebe – Keep
The 22-year-old recently kept Paris Saint-Germain superstars Neymar and Kylian Mbappe quiet, which is no mean feat.
Teden Mengi – Keep
Highly-rated 18-year-old centre-back who has a big future at Old Trafford.
Paul Pogba – Sell
It’s just not working out, is it? A quality player but it’s now best for all concerned if he moves on in 2021.
Juan Mata – Sell
No longer the player he once was, sadly. It’s time for the Spaniard to leave.
Jesse Lingard – Sell
Not as bad as some people like to make out, but not good enough to be a first-team regular at Old Trafford either.
Fred – Keep
The Brazilian tends to perform best in the big games but still needs to become more consistent.
Bruno Fernandes – Keep
The Portuguese maestro’s performance-levels have dipped recently but there has been speculation – dismissed by those concerned – that he doesn’t see eye-to-eye with Solskjaer.
Daniel James – Sell
The Welshman comes across as a lovely lad; however, it’s extremely doubtful that he’s good enough for Manchester United.
Facundo Pellistri – Keep
A new arrival and one for the future rather than the present.
Nemanja Matic – Sell
United need better midfielders than Matic in order to challenge for major honours.
Donny van de Beek – Keep
The Dutchman has only featured sporadically for the Red Devils since completing his £40 million summer move from Ajax.
Scott McTominay – Keep
A good squad player.
Edinson Cavani – Keep
Man Utd need a proper number nine and unless Pochettino can convince Harry Kane to move to Old Trafford, Edinson Cavani will do for now.
Anthony Martial – Keep
The Frenchman scored 23 goals in all competitions last season. That alone is a good enough reason to keep him for now.
Marcus Rashford – Keep
Absolutely no doubt about this one.
Mason Greenwood – Keep
And the same applies for Greenwood, although the youngster needs to knuckle down again and focus on his football.
Out on loan
Andreas Pereira – Sell
Not good enough.
Diogo Dalot – Keep
Dalot is currently on loan at AC Milan but Man Utd shouldn’t give up on the full-back just yet.
James Garner – Keep
Only 19 years old, let’s see how he gets on at Watford.
Joel Pereira – Sell
Again, not good enough.
Tahith Chong – Keep
The 20-year-old has already caught the eye on loan at Werder Bremen this season.
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