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Manchester United icon tells Sir Jim Ratcliffe the exact profile needed in the summer transfer window



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One Manchester United icon has told Sir Jim Ratcliffe the exact type of midfielder the club needs to sign in the summer transfer window.

The Reds have been struggling during Erik ten Hag’s second season in charge at Old Trafford and Gordon Strachan believes that the biggest issue comes in the engine room of the team.

Strachan, 66, played for United across a five-year period in the 1980s and appeared 179 times for the club. The former player believes that Ten Hag’s side is missing a ball carrying midfielder who can be a ‘difference-maker’ in the middle of the park.

United signed the midfield duo of Casemiro and Christian Eriksen in the summer of 2022 and the experienced pair appeared to fix the long-standing issue for the club in the position.

However, with both players entering their thirties as they joined the club, it was expected that their importance would diminish, but not quite as quickly as it has done. Neither player truely offers the ball carrying abilities cited by Strachan.

Kobbie Mainoo offers a promosing potential solution in that respect, but is being tasked with playing as the deepest midfielder in the team when he starts. That limits his abilities to drive with the ball at his feet.

Meanwhile, new addition Mason Mount has struggled with injuries since joining and is yet to show what he can truely offer the side. Captain Bruno Fernandes offers a wonderful range of passing but rarely looks to progress the ball through carrying and taking on players.

“The problem with Manchester United is their midfield,” said Strachan, as quoted by the Daily Star. “Good players in their own right – but there is no imagination there really.

“There is no one that can eliminate people in the middle of the park by carrying the ball through the lines.”

United should not be taking the gamble on relying on Mainoo to offer this skill and Strachan suggests that Ratcliffe and his INEOS team should be looking at certain players within great sides in recent years to bring in that profile of player to Old Trafford.

“If you look at the best midfield players over the past 20 years; the likes of your [Andreas] Iniestas, Xavis, Luka Modric – and then more recently with Bernardo Silva – they can all beat the press with the ball at their feet,” he continued.

“I don’t think United have that in their entire squad of midfielders. The players who played are all good in their own right, but you need that difference-maker.”