When Rio Ferdinand finally hangs up his boots- which many expect will be at the end of the current season- most Manchester United fans would be forgiven for thinking that David Moyes will have already embedded his replacement into the first-team squad.
With the general consensus being that the Scot will use a portion of his January war-chest to finance the purchase of new centre-half, there's been a fair amount of speculation surrounding who will be added to the defensive roster at Old Trafford as they look to strengthen their back line for the future.
However I'm of the small majority that Moyes doesn't necessarily need to bring in a defender who's going to be heralded as the 'next Nemanja Vidic', not least one who will cost them a fair chunk of their finances.
This is where we arrive at the name being regularly plucked by journalists from the ballot-box of candidates to be bought in the January transfer window; Ezequiel Garay.
The former Real Madrid man has somewhat found his feet at Benfica and subsequently attracted the praise of the footballing media around Europe. This though, at least in my opinion, doesn't merit a move to the Premier League champions, nor does it mean that he should be their first port of call.
Despite the fact that Garay was long-term transfer target of the recently retired Sir Alex Ferguson, I can't help but question what the 27-year-old would add to the United squad that they don't already have.
If a move for a central defender is to be made it needs to be focused around someone who is both already sure to be able to cope with the rigours of the Premier League and serve as the back-bone of the squad when Nemanja Vidic follows Ferdinand's path down the road towards finalising his career.
In this respect Garay ticks neither box.
At Madrid Garay wasn't able to cut the mustard- which can be forgiven considering the competition for places there- but his overall lack of game-time, and his subsequent sale to Portugal, would indicate that he wasn't good enough to play at the highest level.
He may have impressed in the Primera Liga, but I'm sure I'm not the only one who would hesitate to draw comparisons between that it's respective division in England.
Then there's the matter of United already having the ready made replacement to partner Vidic in Phil Jones. The Englishman holds far more potential for the future that his Argentinian counter-part, and is crying out for a position to make his own having served as air-apparent in a number of positions since his arrival at Old Trafford.
At £17million Moyes would be taking an expensive risk of Garay; a player whose ultimate potential doesn't weigh up against the gamble at hand.
He may be critically acclaimed in Portugal, but the Benfica man simply can't provide David Moyes with what he needs.
Reports claim that the current United boss didn't want to sign Garay in the summer- he'd be wise to stick to his guns.
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