Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Transfer talk hotting up: United and Arsenal in striker battle?

United continue to be linked with Miguel Veloso of Sporting Lisbon, the Reds are set to take on the Portuguese club in the Champions League next week and no doubting this will further fuel the speculation that Fergie is interested in acquiring yet another central midfield holding player.

So why exactly would United need Veloso given that they already have Owen Hagreaves and Michael Carrick? It doesn't seem to make a lot of sense, unless the Reds have concerns over the long term fitness of the former Bayern Munich star, or is it perhaps that Carrick could be sold back to Spurs in part exchange for Berbatov? Personally I cannot see the latter being the case, as I expect Ramos to follow Rafa Benitez in buying stars from Spain.

Fergie's most pressing problem is to find a new striker, so the stories linking United to Miguel Veloso are either speculation coming from the player and his agents or else the media - who not for the first time are being shall we say 'creative'.

On the search for new forwards and ahead of the weekend clash with Bolton. Carlos Tevez does not return from international duty until Friday morning and with Rooney being out injured it leaves Fergie desperately short of numbers having to rely on Saha and the jet-lagged Argentine - who by the way was sent-off in the 2-1 defeat to Colombia on Tuesday night in a World Cup qualifier. Don't be surprised if either Ryan Giggs or Ronaldo play up front alongside Saha against Bolton.

So will the manager try to sign a new striker in the January transfer window? Most fans will surely agree that he simply has to, but as ever the best players will be cup-tide for Europe, whoever it is that comes in will still be able to play in the Premier League.

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is a name that has been cropping up in reports linking him with a move to the Red Devils, Arsenal are also said to be interested. The Ajax star is of course hot property with a number of European and English clubs said to be in the hunt for his signature. Unlike United, the Gunners appear to be able to conduct their transfer business without news spilling out onto the back pages, thus alerting rivals which can affect valuations and fees. The talk is that Huntelaar will cost at least £10m.

Berbatov remains a possibility for United, but there's been some recent speculation which suggests the Bulgarian striker might be lacking in appetite when it comes to battling for a starting place. Ferguson and David Gill have made it clearly down the years that there needs to be a desire to want to play for the club and this will be key when talking to the likes of Huntelaar and Berbatov.


  1. A nice read, as always.

    Hasn't Frazier Campbell been receiving praise for his performances at Hull? If the trio of Rooney, Tevez and Saha is fit going into the transfer window, I can easily imagine Fergie welcoming back Campbell and not buying a fourth striker. It'd be a gamble, but so was selling Smith and Rossi this summer before securing Tevez.

    Furthermore the Veloso rumour might meen a 'thank you and goodbye' to Fletcher? A Scottish national player can hardly be happy with the amount of playing time he has coming his way. Especially not when he has delivered when called upon.

  2. Veloso's quite versatile and has been used at left-back before, so purchasing him as cover for Evra (and perhaps to prevent other big sides from having him)is the only semi-reasonable motivation I can see for pursuing him.


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