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“Why shouldn’t Manchester United consider signing him?” – Andy Cole calls for Premier League transfer in January



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Former Manchester United striker Andy Cole believes that his former side could make a ‘good addition’ if they managed to sign Brentford forward Ivan Toney in the January transfer window.

Cole, 51, was part of United’s most successful squad in history after Sir Alex Ferguson’s men won the Treble in 1999 – where the English forward was one of the most important players.

The former striker believes that Toney of Brentford could make a good signing for United to bolster the frontline, with Anthony Martial’s fitness and form continuing to seem a concern and Rasmus Hojlund, 20, being the only other natural option up front.

A football agent has told The Athletic that Toney is “destined” to leave the Gtech Community Stadium in the January transfer window. “It’s destined to happen when he gets back (after his ban) and (the deal) can get sorted whilst he’s out.”

However, Cole also is wary about the step up to United for the 27-year-old, who has not played professional football since April following a ban for gambling.

“I like him. If Manchester United did move to sign Ivan, then he’s only going to make them a little bit better than they find themselves at this exact moment,” said Cole when speaking to BetFred. “He’s been a key player for Brentford and he’s scored plenty of goals for them in the Premier League and if the opportunity came up, then why shouldn’t Manchester United consider signing him?

“It all depends on what Manchester United see themselves doing going forward. Ivan’s 27 years old and he could even help Rasmus Højlund come through. If they are interested in signing him, then I believe Ivan could be a good addition to this Manchester United team. 

“Could Ivan make the step up to a team like Manchester United? We could argue about whether Højlund can make the step up at Old Trafford. Nobody knows what can happen because any player that comes into Manchester United, that we don’t know much about, is going to be considered a gamble.

“He’s yet to get off the mark for the club, even though we know that he’s scored goals already at international level for Denmark, but nobody knows what they’re going to get from Rasmus yet. When you ask whether players like Ivan Toney can make the step up to the next level, then you’re never going to know whether they’re capable or not until they’re given the opportunity to show that they can do it.

“When I moved from Bristol City to Newcastle United, did people believe I could make the step up? I don’t think they did but I was able to. When I moved from Newcastle United to Manchester United, did people believe I could make the step up? I don’t think they did but I proved that I could, so it’s all about giving players the opportunity.”

Toney scored 20 Premier League goals last season and will be available for selection come January. He recently explained that he wants to “fight for trophies” on Steven Bartlett’s The Diary of a CEO podcast, although did add that he supported United’s rivals Liverpool growing up.