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Analysis: Welbeck use shows Ronaldo or Falcao bid is on for Red Devils

Will Manchester United bring in another striker this summer?

Sir Alex Ferguson has been keen to say that he does not want to sell any of his strikers this summer, and there is no reason to disbelieve him.

This has led many to conclude United will not be signing any more forwards, despite relentless speculation linking them with Cristiano Ronaldo, Robert Lewandowski, and Falcao.

So something doesn't add up, and the answer to the conundrum is Danny Welbeck.

Welbeck as many critics have been keen to point out has scored just one Premier League goal this season, plus one in the Champions League against Real Madrid.

It's not a good return for an international striker, but many have been keen to defend him from his poor strike-rate, due to the position he has been played in.

Welbeck has often been played behind the frontman, in an attacking midfield role, and when you look at just how frequently this has happened, it's quite revealing.

Check out this data from Welbeck's starts, provided by whoscored.com


The staggering element here is not just how frequently Welbeck has started in midfield or behind the striker, but just how rarely the 23-year-old has started as a striker. 

It amounts to just two starts as a striker in major competitions in 2012/13, an amount that hardly registers.

So what this means is that based on this season, United have essentially played with three strikers - Hernandez, Rooney and Van Persie - and even of late Rooney has been playing more as an attacking midfielder too.

This means that if Welbeck is being regarded at present by Ferguson as more of a withdrawn attacker, there is space in United's squad for Ronaldo, Falcao, Lewandowski or whichever major striker the Red Devils want to bring in.

Welbeck's long-term position may well be a striker, but from the looks of it for now Ferguson is not regarding him as one.

For this reason alone, expect United to give the green light in their attempts to sign one of Europe's elite forwards to bolster their attack in 2013/14.

Agree? Disagree? What do you think?

image: © vagueonthehow

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