Former Manchester United striker Louis Saha has been speaking to the Manchester Evening News and believes the club must sign a new striker in the summer after deciding against taking up the option of making Radamel Falcao's loan move from Monaco permanent.
Louis van Gaal's side struggled up front last season and Falcao's underwhelming loan spell did not help. Dutchman Robin van Persie still has not rediscovered his form under Sir Alex Ferguson and for that reason alone may be on his way out of Old Trafford, as per ESPN, who have been linking the striker with a move to Galatasaray.
The 24-year-old is renowned for his finishing, pace and ability to hold onto the ball.
“I think it’s a must United sign a striker,” Saha told Manchester Evening News.
“Because you have always the need for competition up front, that’s what brings excellence to every player.
“So yes, I would say that a big name is not something that is always good for a manager’s experience. Maybe a bit more speed than before, to put the defenders on their toes a bit more and to get behind defenders.
“Could Lacazette thrive at United? I think so, it’s obvious he’s done really well in France, he’s scored many, many goals because he can threaten behind, he can score from far, he’s a very clever player.”
Taking into consideration the way Van Gaal sets his Manchester United side up, there is only room for one striker in the starting line-up.
Lacazette, who is scoring goals for fun in Ligue 1 and attracting interest from a lot of top European clubs, including Arsenal (per the Metro), is not likely to be satisfied sitting on the bench when Wayne Rooney is more than capable of playing up front alone.
This is seemingly something Saha has not considered despite conceding that the England man has become a victim of his willingness to do whatever job is required of him for the good of the collective cause.
“The difficulty I think is he went on a period when Manchester United is not the same team, so he struggled to put all the attributes towards one target,” the Frenchman added.
“He had to do many, many stuff for the club and he managed well.
“I think he sacrificed himself a bit more than other players because he’s capable of doing it, so maybe people judge that he could have achieved more.
“But he’s done extremely well from what he’s been asked to do, so yeah, if you look at goals he could have definitely scored more goals, but he wasn’t able to do it and he was asked to dictate the game.”
Is a striker a must for Manchester United this summer?
There are other departments in Van Gaal's squad that need addressing first. The priority this summer should be a holding midfielder, centre-back or right-back. If Manchester United can strengthen those areas, they have a good chance next season.
What happens if Rooney gets injured? The Old Trafford club still have Van Persie, Javier Hernandez and James Wilson on their books. When you play a system with one starting striker, a total of three in your squad should be enough.