Manchester United manager Louis van Gaal wants to sign at least three more players before the new season stars and has made signing a new defender, central midfield star and wing wizard his top transfer priorities, according to the Daily Mail.
Van Gaal arrived at United's Carrington training ground to begin work in earnest on transforming the Red Devils into title contenders earlier today, less than four days after guiding the Netherlands to third place at the World Cup finals to further enhance his stellar reputation as a top coach.
The former Barcelona and Bayern Munich chief is acutely aware that he needs reinforcements quickly though, and right down the spine of a new-look team.
United have of course already spent in excess of £50m this summer before Van Gaal even officially took charge, snapping up Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw as a clear statement of intent that the Red Devils will mean business again next season.
Van Gaal is demanding more though and with veterans Rio Ferdinand and Nemanja Vidic calling time on their United careers at the end of last term its not hard to see why a new central defender is viewed as absolutely essential.
Arsenal captain Thomas Vermaelen has already been identified as a potential replacement for that experienced duo and definitely looks a player in need of a fresh challenge and regular first-team football, although a £12m price tag has proved a sticking point.
Patrice Evra's decision to hold talks with Juventus has forced the potential addition of a left-back onto Van Gaal's summer shopping list, with Wolfsburg's Swiss star Riccardo Rodriguez being monitored closely.
Ander nother thing
Despite landing Spanish box-to-box dynamo Herrera the Red Devils are also chasing a new central midfielder, but that looks increasingly unlikely to be Juventus talisman Arturo Vidal.
Bianconeri chief Giuseppe Marotta unveiled new coach Massimiliano Allegri earlier today and took the chance to deliver an emphatic statement on Vidal's future, insisting that the Chilean is too important to consider selling.
Van Gaal would like to recruit Roma playmaker Kevin Strootman if Vidal truly is unavailable, but the Dutchman missed the World Cup with a cruciate ligament injury and is unlikely to ready to pass a stringent medical this summer, which puts United in a difficult position.
United also want a new dynamic winger despite having the likes of Ashley Young, Nani and Antonio Valencia still on their books, with Real Madrid superstar Angel di Maria their top target on that front.
Di Maria would cost €60m though and with Paris Saint-Germain also very interested a deal will be very difficult to pull off, which puts Van Gaal in a difficult position in terms of moving to acquire top talent.
United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward is now under huge pressure to deliver players for Van Gaal before the transfer window closes, but the Red Devils have the financial muscle to fund a move for any player he picks and for that reason you can expect the Theatre of Dreams to be cheering new arrivals very soon.
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