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Man United potential 2023/24 lineup if Erik ten Hag signs £160m trio in summer



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Credit: IMAGO / PA Images

Manchester United could be challenging for the Premier League title if they improve their squad in the summer.

Erik ten Hag’s side finished third in the table in 2022/23, ensuring Champions League qualification for the following season, and also won the Carabao Cup whilst finishing runners-up in the FA Cup.

It was a solid first term for the Dutchman at Old Trafford but he will be expecting improvement going forward and in order to improve, United will need to recruit well.

The Reds have been linked to tons of potential transfers – some reliably, others not so much – and are likely to be busy in the summer window.

When looking at the potential recruits, United require players in several key positions but in particular they need a goalkeeper, a midfielder and a centre forward. Whilst depth and quality are needed elsewhere too, solid additions in those positions would really help propel United to the next level.

We have looked at three realistic signings that could slot into United’s starting eleven next season.

Diogo Costa, FC Porto (£65 million)

Diogo Costa of FC Porto is a popular choice among United fans to replace David de Gea as his contract situation looms. The current no.1 has agreed an extension but the deal has not been signed off yet.

The latest reports from Sky Sports say that Costa, 23, is one of the options that United are looking at in net in the case that De Gea’s contract is not extended. He currently has a release clause of £65 million.

Costa would instantly improve United in several areas, offering higher quality build-up in possession but also a substantial improvement in cross-claiming and sweeping too.

Mason Mount, Chelsea (£55 million)

Mason Mount is looking likely to become one of the first signings of the window for United despite there being a large gap in valuation between The Reds and Chelsea.

The midfielder has agreed personal terms with the Old Trafford club, according to several reports, and looks certain to leave Stamford Bridge with United the most likely destination.

United want to pay around £50 million for Mount, according to reports, but The Blues do not want to sell for under £70 million. Yet, they are not playing from a position of strength, with Mount’s deal running out in 12 months, and so the deal could potential be done in the range between those two figures.

Mount, 24, would come into replace Christian Eriksen in the midfield, who’s played alongside Casemiro and Bruno Fernandes in United’s strongest lineup this past season. The England international would offer more energy in both defensive and offensive settings whilst also having the capabilities to make solid on-ball contributions if Ten Hag is able to help him revive his form prior to the 2022/23 campaign.

Whilst there would remain issues in United’s set up – Mount is not a first-phase specialist – the signing would improve the current engine room at Old Trafford and with the player being only 24 years of age, there is certainly room for him to grow.

Rasmus Hojlund (£40 million)

Lastly, United are linked to several strikers in the summer but Rasmus Hojlund looks like one that could actually be heading to Manchester.

Harry Kane’s potential signing looks less likely by the day, with Real Madrid sniffing around the Tottenham Hotspur forward, and Victor Osimehn would require a substantial amount of money to pry away from Napoli.

Hojlund, 20, has previously proclaimed that he is a Man United supporter and looks set to leave Atalanta this summer. He is a highly rated youngster who scored a hat-trick on his full international debut for Denmark.

There are major question marks over his ability to be starting at Old Trafford next season. Ideally, of course, the marksman would be signed alongside a more senior option and could play understudy for a couple of years.

However, even if the young centre-forward was the only striker signing for the club this summer, he would instantly offer attributes that United miss in their team. He is an athletic forward who offers the general assets that you’d want from a number nine; some of them will likely be raw though.

Ultimately, if United are able to strengthen several other areas of the team, then solely adding Hojlund to the striker force might not be the worst scenario even if he is inexperienced. Marcus Rashford has also been used through the middle to success more under Ten Hag which would offer alternatives to the potential new signing.

These three players would need to be instant hits for United to even think about winning the Premier League next season. Yet, all three would address some important issues for the team and build a stronger base for the side. Adding further quality, such as a world class striker, alongside that would be what leads United to a real title challenge.

Yet, for around a reported £160 million, these three players could help United improve one step further in their quest to return to the top.

Full XI

Diogo Costa (£65m)

Diogo Dalot

Raphael Varane

Lisandro Martinez

Luke Shaw


Mason Mount (£55m)

Jadon Sancho

Bruno Fernandes

Marcus Rashford

Rasmus Hojlund (£40m)