Ed Woodward under pressure to get it right at Manchester United

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Ed Woodward looked like he has managed to banish his annus horribilis last summer with the early signings and deadline day swoops he orchestrated for Manchester United.

Radamel Falcao in particular was the kind of  player the United fans have wanted for sometime. A player capable of tearing apart defences on any given day.

However Falcao has failed miserably to live up to his star billing and massive salary, while Angel di Maria too hasn't had a stellar season that his fee demanded and the jury is very much still out.

Was Woodward building an era of Galacticos at the Theatre of Dreams or was he like a kid in a sweet shop? We shall have to see. But with another window approaching, who should he target and who can make him a legend at the club?

United's defence hasn't been as porous in the latter half of the season but clearly they still require a central defender that can marshall the back line in way Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand did for so long.


Mats Hummels is clearly the top target - and has been for some time - and now may be the right time to go for him with Jurgen Klopp departing. However the Cesc Fabregas saga should have taught Woodward a valuable lesson; to have a number of options for every position and not put your eggs in an unobtainable basket.

Ron Vlaar the Aston Villa hardman, or 'Roncrete' as he has been named, could also fill this void at a fraction of the price of Hummels and will likely have less suitors. Louis van Gaal knows him well and he could well make the trip north up the M6.

Meanwhile, if reports are to be believed Nathaniel Clyne could also be on the way to Old Trafford. United fans will hope he performs better than Luke Shaw, his former Southampton teammate, has early in his Manchester career.


Midfield is also a problem position also for LVG. Michael Carrick isn't getting and an effective replacement for him will have to be acquired at some point.

Again the top target seems out of reach for a different reason; Kevin Strootman has struggled after his knee injury and has recently had clean up surgery and will not be fit until the new season at the earliest.

Paul Pogba obviously deserves a mention here but could Ed Woodward pull off this move with Europe's biggest teams ready to bid for the classy Juventus midfielder? Arturo Vidal is no longer pulling up trees in Serie A after his knee injury and protracted will he/won't he saga last summer, leaving Dortmund's Ilkay Gundogan as a more likely target.

The powerful German international looks certain to leave and maybe Woodward could pull off his biggest coup with a double raid. But he too has suffered horribly with injuries.


Upfront could be the biggest conundrum, it's a case of stick or twist: let Falcao stay and possibly tear Europe apart again with a season's experience in the Premier League or let him go hoping he doesn't recover his form elsewhere.

Robin van Persie looks like his best days are also behind him and may be allowed to leave in the summer. In terms of replacements, Edinson Cavani looks out of the equation having pledged his allegiance to PSG and his superstar team mate Zlatan Ibrahimovic may be a bridge too far although he is prone to moving frequently.

Memphis Depay, although not an out-and-out forward, should prove easier to lure with his links to ex-national manager Van Gaal, who gave him a Netherlands debut and took him to the World Cup.

Can Woodward pull off any or all of these signings? If he does the glory days will surely be back at the Theatre of Dreams.

Manchester United fans: who do you hope to see arrive at the club this summer? Let us know below!

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Premier League
Edinson Cavani
Manchester United
Louis van Gaal

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