Grading the Latest Manchester United Transfer Rumours

Sam Tighe@@stighefootballWorld Football Tactics Lead WriterMarch 27, 2012

Grading the Latest Manchester United Transfer Rumours

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    The rumour mill is in overdrive as the summer approaches.

    Plenty of clubs get their scouting done and their targets finalised during the last few months of the season and look to pick up anyone they may have missed out on in January.

    Sir Alex Ferguson's scouting department never sleeps and, according to various sources through the UK, they've been as busy as ever.

    Read on to check out the latest players linked with a move in or out of Old Trafford.

    Each potential transfer is graded in relation to how it would affect Manchester United, taking into account squad depth, transfer fee and performance levels.

In: Klaas-Jan Huntelaar

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    Goals don't lie.

    Klass-Jan Huntelaar scores lots and lots of them. He's bagged 31 goals in 30 games for current club FC Schalke 04 this season and represents a true striking force.

    Manchester United are stacked up front for now but it is widely expected that Dimitar Berbatov will leave the club this summer.

    The fee being touted is £12 milliona steal in all honesty.

    Grade: A

Out: Michael Owen and Dimitar Berbatov

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    Michael Owen could be the subject of an audacious loan bid from Championship side Reading.

    Bit of a mental one really, as there's almost no chance Sir Alex Ferguson would release an experienced goal-getter like Owen in the midst of a title race.

    Grade: C


    Dimitar Berbatov, it seems, is definitely on his bike though. His contract looks likely to be extended to prevent losing him for free, but then immediately sold to the highest bidder. The quoted price is £5 million.

    Worth a punt for any Premier League club.

    Grade: C

In: Nicolas Gaitan

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    Nicolas Gaitan is a name Manchester United fans will be familiar with.

    He regularly stars in the Benfica side who dumped the Red Devils out of the UEFA Champions League and has formed a wonderful partnership with Pablo Aimar and Javier Saviola.

    He'd cost £25 million according to The Daily Mirror and he's probably worth every penny. But do United need another winger? He can play centrally, but in more of a support striker role than a solid central midfield role.

    Manchester United need another Paul Scholes, really.

    Grade: C

In: Nathaniel Clyne

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    I wouldn't blame Sir Alex Ferguson for scouring the market and finding a new right-back.

    Having witnessed Rafael's costly blunder against Athletic Bilbao, I honestly thought he'd never play for Manchester United ever again.

    He's back in the side and played well against Fulham but if The Daily Mail are to be believed, Fergie's looking for other options.

    Nathaniel Clyne is a talented young right-back currently playing for Crystal Palace.

    He wouldn't cost the earth, he's young, hungry and English, but he's not an immediate fix.

    Grade: B

Out: Ritchie De Laet

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    The Daily Mail reckon Alex McLeish will continue his rebuilding of Aston Villa with a free transfer signing of Ritchie De Laet.

    With Richard Dunne ageing and Carlos Cuellar's contract set for expiration, Villa need to make a move for a central defender for next season.

    Is Ritchie De Laet the answer? Probably not. It won't impact Manchester United when he leaves. We were all shocked when he actually joined from Stoke City several years ago.

    Grade: B

Out: Rafael and Fabio da Silva

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    Finally, reckons Barcelona will be happy to take underperforming duo Rafael and Fabio da Silva to the Nou Camp.

    As mentioned earlier, Rafael made a bad mistake against Athletic Bilbao which could signal the end to his career at Old Trafford, whilst Fabio hasn't really started one yet.

    The left-sider, Fabio, has managed less than 10 Premier League starts since joining in August 2008 but in fairness to him, Patrice Evra is a big obstacle.

    On the other hand, the right-back berth was Rafael's to lose after Gary Neville retired. It appears he may have lost it.

    Both twins would fit in well under Pep Guardiola's system, but this transfer would require Sir Alex Ferguson taking immediate action during the summer to shore up both flanks.

    Grade: C