Manchester United's David Moyes has a £100 million transfer bounty burning a hole in his pocket, per Mark Ogden of The Telegraph, and with news of a six-week injury lay-off for star striker Robin van Persie, the summer transfer window can't come soon enough.
Much has already been made of the current United squad being one inherited from Sir Alex Ferguson, and former Manchester City manager Joe Royle was just one pundit to come out in support of Moyes, via the Alan Brazil Breakfast Show on talkSPORT.
Clearly Moyes will be keen to stamp his own mark at Old Trafford via his summer transfer dealings and one player who has been interesting the Scot has been Borussia Dortmund's exciting Marco Reus, per Matthew Nash of Metro.
With eight goals and eight assists in his 21 games, per WhoScored.com, and an ability to play right across all midfield areas with equal aplomb, the reasons for the German's acquisition are plentiful and obvious.
However, his signing may not now be as clear-cut as originally thought. Via Ben Jefferson of the Daily Express, FIFA agent Francois Gallardo told Spanish TV channel La Sexta of the player's own desire to play for Barcelona:
This is a player who has given an ultimatum to Barcelona. He expects a quick response or he will decide on another destination.
This is a top player who was at one time a target for Real Madrid. That should revive the interest from those at the Camp Nou.
Moyes will be hoping that any interest from the Catalans is on the wane as he looks to build a squad capable of challenging for honours next season.
Neil Moxley of the Daily Mirror notes that Moyes does have a particular ace up his sleeve, with ex-Dortmund player Shinji Kagawa believed to be offered as part of a player-plus-cash deal.
There are, of course, other targets on his hit-list.
Southampton's 24-year-old Croatian centre-back has impressed everyone on the south coast since a summer move from Lyon, and Sami Mokbel of the Daily Mail notes Moyes' interest in bringing the player to Old Trafford as a replacement for the outgoing Nemanja Vidic and out-of-contract Rio Ferdinand.
Having a competent defensive core is at the heart of any truly successful side, and the loss of Vidic and Ferdinand cannot be downplayed. It will hurt United if appropriate replacements cannot be found.
However, as Squawka notes, Lovren fits the bill:
Dejan Lovren has won 1.61 tackles per 90 minutes of action for Southampton this season.
Nemanja Vidic has averaged just 1.03 tackles won for every 90 minutes he has played.
Mokbel understands that Lovren will give serious consideration to a move to Old Trafford should Moyes firm up any interest.
Having played all but two minutes of Southampton's Premier League season, Moyes can be sure of the player's competency and how highly he is regarded by Mauricio Pochettino.
Clearly, class won't come cheap with Jamie Sanderson of Metro noting a £15 million is bid in the offing, but the Scot would be foolish to quibble if a player of such ability becomes available.
Another centre-back primed for a move to Manchester is ex-Chelsea hard man Alex.
The Brazilian has seen his career revitalised at French champions Paris Saint Germain, where he has enjoyed a magnificent defensive partnership alongside fellow Brazilian Thiago Silva.
According to French magazine Le10Sport (h/t Sport Witness), serious discussions have already taken place with United's representatives for a player who is out of contract in the summer.
PSG are reluctant to give the player the two-year deal he craves, and given he would be available on a free transfer, it could well tempt Moyes to accede to the player's demands.