Bayern Munich duo Toni Kroos and Thomas Muller have thrown their respective futures into doubt in recent weeks. While 24-year-old Kroos has been negotiating whether or not he will extend his contract at the Allianz Arena, his teammate Muller wants assurances over his place in the team with the Bundesliga champions.
Meanwhile, rivals Borussia Dortmund could buckle under pressure from a number of Europe’s elite clubs hopeful of signing 25-year-old attacking midfielder Marco Reus, who has been heavily linked with interest from Manchester United in recent weeks.
Reus has scored the most goals of the Germany trio with an impressive tally of 16 strikes and 13 assists for Dortmund in 30 appearances in the Bundesliga, predominantly as a winger.
Muller is one of the Bavarian club’s home-grown favourites and operated as a forward this term under Pep Guardiola, scoring 13 goals and providing 10 assists in 31 appearances in the Bundesliga. Kroos was deployed more as an attacking midfielder and playmaker by the Spanish coach, and scored two goals and provided four assists in 29 appearances in the league.
The three players are different in their playing styles and positions, but United manager Louis van Gaal will have the ideal opportunity to see how they work in tandem this summer at the World Cup in Brazil. The Red Devils already have an exceptionally dangerous forward line in Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney, with Javier Hernandez and Danny Welbeck also hopeful of competing for a place up front.
Club-record signing Juan Mata has come in to relieve the creative burden on No.10 Wayne Rooney, but United will likely still have a requirement for attacking midfielders and certainly wingers.
Kroos would effectively be competing with Mata and Rooney for that No.10 role, while Muller could operate in the England international’s position or on the flanks.
Rues is undoubtedly the player out of the three whom United could use most at present due to the lacklustre performances in recent seasons from Ashley Young and Nani, who could well leave Old Trafford this summer.
All three are extremely dangerous players and all are versatile in terms of where they can operate, but certainly Reus would likely walk into the United team at present while Muller and Kroos’ positions are already occupied by top players.
United already have a substantial goal threat from their strike-force and attacking midfield, and what they could use to compound that is a wide forward like Reus. While Muller and Kroos would strengthen any team, the former would likely be a better option out wide than the latter, who could be an improvement on Tom Cleverley in midfield, for example.
If Reus came in to play on the left flank, for example, that would likely limit the opportunity of United youngster Adnan Januzaj, while Muller’s potential signing could see Antonio Valencia fall down the pecking order on the right side.
The prospect of United having the threat of Van Persie, Rooney, Mata and any one of these three across attacking midfield positions is surely mouth-watering, but it remains to be seen who will be available to Van Gaal at Old Trafford next term.