Predicting Manchester United's Summer Ins and Outs in the Transfer Market
Despite there being plenty of football yet to be played this season, Manchester United fans unite in predicting their favourite side's future transfer activity.
As early as the September of the previous year, speculation is rife regarding the possible ins and outs at the end of the current campaign.
Wilfried Zaha is the only known acquisition due to arrive at Old Trafford at the end of the current campaign, everything else is guesswork.
Using an irrefutable theory known only to myself, this article will seek to predict which other players Sir Alex Ferguson and the Glazers will sign this summer and which players will be sold.
Finding the truth in all the tabloid spin can be a tricky task indeed.
In: Kevin Strootman
Kevin Strootman seems to be well aware of the mounting interest in his signature from the Premier League's finest.
Last week the Dutchman told reporters "every transfer window there are clubs interested. But a club must speak to me first" (via The Sun).
Manchester United and Arsenal top the list of potential admirers, but it's the Red Devils who could very well win the race to sign the 23-year-old.
Strootman is a powerful box-to-box midfielder with excellent technique and awareness. He would not only offer protective cover for the defense, but he would be a marauding, creative threat storming the opposition half.
Out: Federico Macheda
The time has surely come for Manchester United to cut Italian striker Federico Macheda loose.
We all remember how the then-17-year-old burst onto the scene, scoring an unforgettable late winner in a crucial Premier League game against Aston Villa in 2009.
Four years later and Macheda hasn't done anything of note. Despite making the odd appearance for the Red Devils, he has spent several disastrous loan spells at Sampdoria, Queens Park Rangers and his current team, VfB Stuttgart.
The Red Devils would be lucky to get more than £1 million for his sale, but though he is yet to find the back of the net for the Bundesliga side, Stuttgart remain keen on making the move permanent.
In an interview with German newspaper Bild, Macheda's agent revealed "we have a gentleman's agreement with United but we have not yet found the time to meet" (h/t The Express).
In: James Rodriguez
If Sir Alex Ferguson believes a young player could be capable of greatness, he will do all in his power to bring that player to Old Trafford.
It's quite possible Porto attacking midfielder James Rodriguez falls into this category.
The Colombian has unbelievable potential and would offer the Red Devils the type of efficient width they've been missing this season.
The Daily Mail reported last week that "Rodriguez is back at the top of Manchester United's wanted list and [Manchester United] are willing to get rid of one of their most expensive signings to land him."
Who would they willing to get rid of in part exchange for the 21-year-old? Read on to find out.
Forgive my optimism, but the Anderson-for-James Rodriguez part-exchange swap deal makes perfect sense.
United want the Colombian; Anderson wants a return to Portugal—the only debatable issue would be how much the Red Devils pay on top.
In a recent interview with Portuguese newspaper A Bola, the Brazilian revealed that Porto would be the only club he would consider playing for where he to shift back to the country (h/t The Express).
Since moving to Old Trafford in 2007, Anderson has struggled with numerous injuries and seen himself labelled with the dreaded "unfulfilled potential" tag.
Some United fans still hold out hope that he can be the player the side sorely needs in central midfield, but perhaps his exit is best for all parties.
In: Ezequiel Garay
Not to get caught up in the current hype surrounding Benfica's Ezequiel Garay, but it's perfectly believable that Sir Alex feels as if he needs another top centre-back.
Many United fans, myself included, believe the club is already fully stocked with four class players in the position and that one of Jonny Evans or Chris Smalling is the true heir to Rio Ferdinand's crown. But past injury crises seemed to have convinced Sir Alex the need is there.
Last week, Portuguese publication Record claimed that a deal is already in place for Garay to join United in the summer (h/t The Express).
The Daily Mail took the more cautious approach, however, and stated: "Sir Alex Ferguson is trying to push through a £15 million deal for Benfica’s Argentinian defender."
Either way, it seems United are certainly interested.
While the majority of United supporters—again, myself included—would rather see Nani remain at Old Trafford beyond this season, it seems as if the Portuguese winger's time at the club may be reaching an inevitable end.
Nani offers the Red Devils a more creative threat in attack over the rather one-dimensional Ashley Young and Antonio Valencia, and the Portuguese seems to be coming into form for the final stretch of the season at present.
But with there being no breakthrough in contract negotiations, Sir Alex could decide to cash in while there is still an opportunity to do so.
With Zaha already set to join United and Rodriguez being reportedly lined up, the Scotsman may already be preparing for life without Nani.
But as already mentioned, it is mere speculation at this point.
Who do you think Manchester United will sign/sell this summer?