Manchester United have been warned they MUST sign a new midfielder this summer to ease the burden on star man Bruno Fernandes.
The Portuguese ace has been United’s talisman ever since he joined the club from Sporting Lisbon in January. He hit the ground running immediately, so far managing ten goals and eight assists in 20 games for the club.
He will be the Red Devils’ go-to man again when they take on FC Copenhagen on Monday in their Europa League quarter-final, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer looks to achieve what few people thought was possible at the start of the season and end the campaign with a trophy.
Former United defender Paul Parker is confident Solskjaer’s side have what it takes to win the delayed competition, saying this team is the most confident a United side has looked since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013!
But he has big fears for next season if back-up is not brought in.
United are locked in what appears could be this summer’s biggest transfer saga as they look to sign Jadon Sancho back to the Premier League from Borussia Dortmund, while they have been linked with a number of defenders too as Solskjaer looks to shore up his back-four.
But Parker believes their failure to strengthen their options in midfield this summer could have disastrous consequences for their star man, Fernandes, saying the 25-year-old will soon burn out if he keeps carrying the team as he’s been doing ever since he arrived.
“I think they’re capable of [winning the Europa League and] guaranteeing Champions League football, with they way they’ve played since lockdown,” Parker said on Sunday’s Weekend Sports Breakfast.
“You’d have to say they won the lockdown league with the points they won and they must be confident. It’s probably the most confident a United team has been since 2013.
“But they need signings. They can’t go as they are, there’s no way they can do that.
“They’ve done great this season, but there’s no way they can start next season expecting these same players to go and do the same again.
“Fernandes will run out of steam early because he takes so much on himself, he wants to be on the ball, he tracks people back, they’ll be too dependent on him for every game if they carry on as they are.
“Everyone is looking at Pogba now, he’s had his little stint back in the starting line-up, but there’s still too many issues about him defensively.
“They need cover in midfield, and I still believe they need a centre-forward I really, really do.”
He’s not the only one, with both Old Trafford legend Paul Scholes and former United coach Rene Meulensteen urging their old club to put their pursuit of Sancho on hold and go full steam ahead to sign Tottenham star Harry Kane instead.
And Parker insists that’s the sort of player this United team needs to really get back to challenging for regular titles again.
“It hasn’t been talked about, they haven’t been linked with one but I think they need a real centre-forward.
“Not one they’re trying to make into a centre-forward, like Anthony Martial, one who can play that role, enjoys playing in that role and can score goals.”
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