Manchester United Transfers: Top 5 Deadline Day Possibilities
With the end of this summer's transfer window now just four days away, we enter what is perhaps one of the most critical stages of the season for any team.
This coming week in European football will see the now all too familiar frantic scramble to sign and sell players before the window closes on September 1st.
Manchester United have already had a very active summer in regards to comings and goings.
Big names such as Robin van Persie and Shinji Kagawa, as well as perhaps lower-key signings like Nick Powell and Alexander Buttner, have already found their way to Old Trafford this July and August.
On top of this the Red Devils have also let some of their locker room depart from Manchester, with former fan favourite Park Ji-Sung leaving for London side QPR.
As well as the South Korean captain's departure, United have also parted company with the likes of Paul Pogba (Juventus), Tomasz Kuszczak (released) and Ezekiel Fryers (Standard Liege), to name just a few.
So is there anything more to come from Fergie this week?
All indications suggest that United have possibly come to the end of one of their most prosperous summers of wheeling and dealing in recent history.
However, this is football, and as such nothing can be counted out.
Here are just five of Man United's possible shock deadline-day transfer targets.
For the third time this summer, United may go toe to toe with bitter rivals City for a transfer target.
The record currently stands at 1-0 to United (van Persie), with one no contest (Hazard).
It had appeared for a long time like City would eventually win out in this one and lure the 23-year-old Spaniard to the Etihad.
However, with Roberto Mancini believing that perhaps the Atletico Bilbao defensive midfielder is too highly rated by his current side (ITV), it opens the door again for a possible move to the red half of Manchester.
United have shown already this year that they are not afraid to spend big to bring in the players that they want.
29-year-old Dutch striker, Robin van Persie, cost the club £24m.
This signing broke the norm in regards to Fergie signings, with the Scotsman not usually so keen to splash the cash for anyone aged over 26.
Martinez is six years van Persie's junior, and would fill a more-than-necessary void that will soon be opening up at the club with the imminent departures of Paul Scholes and Michael Carrick in the coming years.
On top of this, Martinez has shown real ability to play at centre-back—something that United desperately need in the short term right now.
Martinez would very much be a signing for the present and the future.
Some United fans may be surprised to see the Fulham midfielder's name on this list, but with United reportedly keen on snapping up the Belgian central midfielder, it would be foolish to rule him out.
His performance against Fergie's men on Saturday only boosted the chances of his possible signing, running rings around the United defence on more than one occasion.
In fact, the 25-year-old who currently plies his trade at Craven Cottage is one of the most sought after men of the summer.
United, PSG and even Real Madrid have all shown interest in Dembele, who has for the past two seasons shown his worth time and time again with the London side.
Truth be told, United do not need a player like Moussa as much as some fans might think.
With Cleverly and Kagawa now forming a potentially strong partnership in the Old Trafford midfield, Dembele may struggle to slot into the system.
That being said, with Michael Carrick unlikely to have as great an impact as he did last season, perhaps this is the exact type of player that Sir Alex will want filling that gap.
It is unquestionable that the lad is talented, and has already proven himself time and time again on the Premier League stage.
With the greatest of respect to Fulham, it would be almost criminal if Dembele had not joined a team of a greater pedigree by the end of this year's summer window.
Ideally for United fans, that team will be the Red Devils.
Mehdi Benatia may not be a name that too many Premier League followers are all that familiar with.
For all of those worrying where the replacement for Rio Ferdinand is in a few years time, you may need look no further, assuming any deal is reached for the Moroccan centre-back.
In truth, there isn't a whole lot of buzz around Benatia right now—but a week is a long time in football.
The 25-year-old currently plays as a regular member of Udinese's defensive line-up, and has helped to guide the Bianconeri into back to back Champions League campaigns since his arrival in 2010.
Perhaps one of the most underrated footballers playing at one of the most underrated teams in Europe, Benatia would be a terrific deadline-day acquisition for United.
Benatia has made it more than apparent that he wants to play for the club (Daily Mail), although one can't help but think that despite how flattering that may seem to Fergie, he isn't the sort of man who listens to "orders" from players.
If Sir Alex decides that he does want Mehdi to join the United ranks, then Old Trafford will be welcoming it's first ever Moroccan player.
If not, then Benatia can wave goodbye to his dreams of playing for the club.
If Fergie is sensible though, he might just want to listen to the young man's pleas.
Truth be told this is one of those signings that in essence should be a formality.
The club wants the player and the player wants to move to the club.
But, as I've said before and I'm sure I'll say countless more times in my journalistic career, this is football.
The 22-year-old Mexican burst onto the scene at the Olympics this summer, being one of Mexico's stand out players on their way to the gold medal.
Currently playing at Pachuca, Herrera is understandably looking for a move away from the Mexican League and onto a grander stage.
It's always risky to take on players of such a tender age, but when it comes to Man United, things always seem to work out for the best in this area.
The Red Devils will face a battle to sign Herrera with close rivals Liverpool, who will want to strengthen their squad after a trio of dismal seasons for the once-greatest side of English football.
Herrera, who is affectionately nicknamed "Zorro" by his fans, would be joining up with fellow Mexican wonder-kid, Javier "Chicharito" Hernandez (what's with Mexican footballers and nicknames?).
This is one of those moves that on paper is supremely beneficial for both parties involved.
Of course, that means it probably wont happen.
In all seriousness though, this is probably the most realistic target for United left to be signed.
Will it happen?
Over the course of transfer history, hundreds of players have been reported as "not coming to the club", only to be seen pictured holding up a shiny kit with their new manager mere days later.
Could this be one of those stories?
Unlikely, but this is Kaka we're talking about!
It seemed almost dead set that the Brazilian would be joining Manchester City a few years back, only for the deal to fall through and eventually find his way to the Bernabeau with Real Madrid.
How much difference a few years can make. Kaka currently has no sides willing to take him aboard, not even on a year's loan.
OK, so perhaps he isn't the player he once was, but to have a man who can at times still turn on that old magic simply sitting unused on the Madrid bench just seems wasteful!
If Fergie has no rivals for his services, and is unable to bring in any other midfield players over the coming week, then don't be too shocked to see a change in that attitude.
It is likely that Sir Alex did not want to bring in a player of Kaka's stature for a season, only to eventually lose the player come the end of the loan spell.
However, if Fergie feels that all other options are exhausted, and that he needs a temporary filler-player, then maybe we will see this bizarre transfer go through after all.
Still, any United fans who want to see Kaka playing in the tablecloth red next season may be slightly disappointed.