Whilst my editor lambasted The Sun’s claims last week, I’ll happily suffer the fools a little more gladly and, in the name of wild speculation and sensationalized transfer fantasy, I’ve put together a list of the top targets Ferguson could buy if he really does overhaul his squad to that extent.
As the article asserts, much of the questionable £120 million will have to be generated by player sales and the most speculated player sale this term for the Red Devils is the Wayne Rooney to Paris Saint-Germain rumour.
If United decide to cash in on the Englishman, they could replace him with Robert Lewandowski if they were prepared to outbid Bayern Munich with around £25 million.
Other obvious departures are Nani, Anderson, and possible vice-captain Patrice Evra.
Whilst United fans would obviously love to see an Old Trafford return for Cristiano Ronaldo, I would expect Ferguson to look to the future, not the past, as he’s always done. With that in mind, I would think it highly likely he’d prefer the cheaper and younger James Rodriguez of Porto for somewhere around his valuation of £20 million.
As for Anderson, United definitely need to shore-up their midfield – Darren Fletcher has gone through a torrid time with illness, Paul Scholes will likely retire as a player after his knee injury this term and Anderson has been about as useful as an ashtray on a motorbike.
I would expect to see a signing like PSV Eindhoven’s Kevin Strootman who ahs been linked with United for months on end. He’d cost around £10 million and would link up well with Michael Carrick and Shinji Kagawa.
Meanwhile, United have been pretty rock solid in terms of their defensive unit this term – they have conceded a few too many goals but Rio Ferdinand, Jonny Evans, and Phil Jones have been exceptional this term.
However, captain Nemanja Vidic has been in poor form and fitness by his usually top-notch standards and United might fancy bringing in a centre-back like Benfica’s Ezequiel Garay for around £15 million.
As for Evra, who has been linked with a move back to his homeland, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Ferguson headhunt Leighton Baines from Everton. But Baines won’t come cheap – David Moyes is an expert when it comes to his transfer dealings. He ought to set United back around £15 million at the very least.
That brings to a subtotal of £85 million, leaving Ferguson with just £35 million left in his pocket. So, what else could he possibly need? He has Robin van Persie, the goalie’s looked a lot better this term, he’s got a watertight defence and plenty of options in midfield.
In my estimation between Ashley Young, Nani and Antonio Valencia – whether through lack of form or fitness – he still needs to get an impact winger. Rodriguez would be one but he’d probably be wise to invest in a long-term replacement for Ryan Giggs.
There is only one man who can replace United legendary Welshman and that is his young compatriot Gareth Bale. Tottenham won’t want to sell, especially to United but if a big enough offer came in, Daniel Levy would take it, most likely.
He’d cost about £40 million plus some additional clauses and conditions but he’d be worth it. However, Ferguson would have to find an extra £5 million to get him.
A sale of Young or Valencia could be enough to generate such a huge re-investment but, with a team like that, United would be guaranteed champions for the next decade.
It’ll probably never happen but everyone’s allowed a dream, aren’t they?