United may have an established first-team squad right now, but it is lack of quality and depth on the bench that is presently the issue, and probably hurt us the most against Sevilla as Ole just didn’t have faith in the bench to provide a match-winning moment. Bournemouth, Watford, and Norwich we relegated to the Championship this season, and we take a look at five players that we can sign from these teams. This scavenger hunt would be mainly to recruit squad players and impact subs.
1. TODD CANTWELL
In a dismal Premier League campaign for the Canaries, Todd Cantwell was a shining light. He scored against United in the FA Cup through a belter and was probably the best player for the Canaries by far. The Dereham born midfielder scored 7 goals and assisted 2 from midfield in the entire season which is not a bad return for a midfielder. This also takes into account that Teemu Pukki was absolutely abysmal in the latter half of the season.
He is young – just 22 years old, energetic, creative and can pick a pass, making him an option worth considering if we don’t get our primary targets for the CAM position, to say nothing of him being a cheap option for us, he would be content with a role from the bench, and possibly could make an impact from there. He fits Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s transfer policy perfectly i.e. to sign players who are hungry for game-time, and are not quite the finished article yet.
He is extremely versatile and can play basically anywhere in the attacking line and midfield, and he could also be utilized as a false 9 as once used by Daniel Farke. If we decide to pass on from Grealish, which looks increasingly likely if we continued to be priced out, Cantwell may be an option worth considering. Also because Norwich was relegated, he should be available cheaply - maybe in the region of £20 million or less especially with a creative add-on’s payment structure, increasingly a staple of the Woodward-Judge negotiation tactic.
2. ISMAILA SARR
Ismaila Sarr is probably already a cult hero for the Red Devil fans (possibly even Arsenal fans) due to his heroics in the match which eventually ended Liverpool’s winning run in the Premier League. The Senegalese curiously suffered relegation with a really competent Watford side, which could mainly be blamed on the Club’s board. Sarr is Premier league quality as he had shown repeatedly mainly under Nigel Pearson with 6 goals and six assists, and there is reported interest from our Merseyside rivals, Liverpool, in securing his signature.
Ismaila Sarr would be an absolute steal if we manage to get him to sign. A speedy, energetic player who likes to dribble is what Solskjaer looks for in a winger, and Sarr could be a good addition to the squad and could be a capable backup to Mason Greenwood or Jadon Sancho if we sign him considering that Dan James’ best position is on the Left Wing. He won’t be cheap though as Watford is reportedly demanding a fee of 35 – 40 million for him. David Brooks might be another attractive prospect.