Rio Ferdinand believes Manchester United hopes for this season could hinge on their transfer market activity, as they continue to push to sign Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho.
United legend Ferdinand believes manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer achieved his primary goal last season by securing a top-four finish and qualification for this season’s Champions League, but he suggests further progress will depend on the signings he is allowed to make now.
United have made a breakthrough in talks over the wages and agents fees that would be involved in a deal to sign England starlet Sancho. And Old Trafford great Ferdinand believes big-name arrivals need to join Donny van de Beek by arriving at the club before the October 5 transfer deadline.
“I don’t know if United can be serious contenders for the Premier League title this season and it probably depends on what they do in the transfer market,” Ferdinand told TEAMtalk.
“You look at the impact Bruno Fernandes has had since he arrived at United and it shows what can happen if one player is dropped into a team.
“Fernandes has been a breath of fresh air for the team. Where he has been great is unlocking the imagination of the team.
“You see Marcus Rashford, Anthony Martial and Mason Greenwood and the minute Fernandes get the ball, they are off, they know their chance is coming. He doesn’t need a second invitation to deliver that pass.
“That’s what top players do. They change a team and a club with their presence and we have seen that with Fernandes at United.
“They need more of that and we know they are looking to sign players like Jason Sancho, but clearly this is a different summer with the coronavirus having a big impact on budgets at a lot of clubs.
“It looks like only a handful of clubs will have money to spend and that gives United, Chelsea and Man City a chance to close the gap on Liverpool is they get their signings right this summer.”
Carragher backs United over Chelsea
Meanwhile, Jamie Carragher has told TEAMtalk that he does not believe Chelsea’s summer spending spree will put them in the mix for this season’s Premier League title.
In fact the pundit, speaking to TEAMtalk at a Sky Sports event, has backed Manchester United to finish ahead of them once again.
Carragher also questioned whether Chelsea can find a winning formula quickly in a summer when they have spent over £200m reshaping their squad.
The Blues have added Ben Chilwell, Thiago Silva, Hakim Ziyech, Kai Havertz and Timo Werner to their ranks in an eye-catching transfer splurge, yet Carragher is not convinced they will be ready to mix it with champions Liverpool and their nearest rivals Manchester City.
“Chelsea were arguably the most interesting team to watch last season for the neutral as you were never quite sure what you would get from them,” said the Liverpool legend. “They had some big wins, got into the top four, but also had some big defeats.
“Chelsea conceded a lot of goals and score a lot of goals and that to continue this season, even after all their signings this summer.”
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