Manchester United's convincing 3-1 triumph over struggling Fulham in the Premier League on Saturday appeared to act as a huge statement of intent.
Fans were positively buoyed by the club's fourth consecutive victory in all competitions and many appeared to be left quietly hoping that previously under pressure Scot David Moyes had finally got to grips with life in the Old Trafford dugout.
However, while United do certainly appear to have turned a corner of sorts in recent weeks, the improvement simply cannot stop there.
United seem to have re-discovered a crucial verve and fluency with the excellent Wayne Rooney partnered with Robin van Persie in the final third, but is vital that both the fans and Moyes do not become complacent and assume that the hard work is already mostly done.
As such, the January transfer window - now just a mere two months away - must be targeted as the time to make significant enhancements to Moyes' squad.
One area that evidently requires urgent priority is in the centre of midfield. While combative Belgian Marouane Fellaini was a welcome addition to the squad on transfer deadline day back in September, United's somewhat rocky opening to the new domestic campaign demonstrated that they are still badly in need of more quality creative players in the middle of the park.
One such player that has been linked with a move to the Premier League champions in recent months - as well as title rivals Arsenal and La Liga giants Barcelona - is Borussia Dortmund star Ilkay Gundogan.
In my opinion, Gundogan is a player who totally fits the bill of what United so obviously require in a new midfield signing.
The 23-year-old - who is supposedly valued at around the £25 million mark by the Bundesliga side - is a truly tenacious playmaker whose admirable engine and fitness should see him adapt seamlessly to the heightened physicality on offer in the Premier League.
The former FC Nurnberg ace is a fearsome talent - perhaps, despite his status as such a vital figure for Jurgen Klopp's widely-admired outfit, one of the world's most promising and criminally underrated midfield stars.
If he were to move to Old Trafford, the commendably versatile Gundogan would immediately command a starting berth in Moyes' midfield and provide the necessary service to ensure that both Rooney and Van Persie were never left particularly short of clear goalscoring opportunities.
For Arsenal, the pursuit of Gundogan would seem to be somewhat unnecessary. While they have been troubled by the loss of Mathieu Flamini in recent weeks, they clearly have enough playmakers in the squad as it is.
While a player of Gundogan's standing would certainly boost Arsene Wenger's men as they search to finally put a halt to their recent painful trophy drought, surely the Frenchman should be immediately prioritising the search an adequate battling alternative to his compatriot?
Without Flamini's gritty and determined displays, the Gunners have appeared somewhat lightweight and that could eventually have a catastrophic impact upon the title race if it is not remedied instantly.
United must beat Arsenal to sign Gundogan.
Not only would he provide the crucial spark of undeniable quality that the club have been lacking in midfield of late, but beating title rivals Arsenal to his signing could land a potentially devastating psychological blow in the title race and therefore further boost Moyes' own standing among supporters.
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