Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Old Trafford Changes

In the wake of the Ruud van Nistelrooy debacle that is coming over the horizon, I feel that there needs to be some real clean up done in the Manchester United dressing room this summer during the transfer window. There are players that United are holding onto that in reality, just can't make the grade anymore and should be sent packing. Here are some of my targets to get the boot along with van Nistelrooy -

Paul Scholes - He hasn't been the Ginger Prince for some time now. Even before his vision problem knocked him out of action until maybe next season, he was not playing up to what the team needed. Sure he would score a goal here and there. Goals are good, but that is not what United need from their midfielders now. They need servicemen, play makers, field generals. Rooney, Saha and Ronaldo all serve the goal scoring role for the team. They need a Zizu or a Deco or a Riquelme or a Ballack. Someone who starts the attack, controls the attack and someone the entire attack flows through. Scholes is not that type of mid-fielder, never really has and sure as hell will not be when he maybe returns.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer – Yes, the hero of the Treble needs to be let go. Don’t get me wrong, he will be mentioned in the hallowed halls of Old Trafford until life ends, but he is no longer able to provide that type of presence to the club. Besides that, he hasn’t been able to remain healthy for what, 3 years now? He is more the bionic man than Lee Majors was in the 1970’s TV show! It seems that part of the club are trying to hold onto anything that makes them look better in the eyes of the supporters, in order to attempt at making nice for Glazer buying the club and raising the ticket prices. Ole has got to be a shadow of the man he was when he put the Treble winner in against Bayern in the 1999 Champions League final. He has had something like 2 knee reconstructions and several other leg injuries in the last three years. How can I guy in his early 30’s with that medical history, ever be considered for a new contract when they refused to fully offer one to Ryan Giggs?

Quinton Fortune – Honestly, in the three years I have been able to watch regular United football on the TV, I have never seen this guy play more than once or twice. I saw them live at Giants Stadium against AC Milan in the summer of 2004. United brought over a younger squad, attempting to allow those who played in Euro 2004 some amount of rest in the off season. I still do not remember seeing Fortune in that squad that they brought over. Did they sign him solely to be a member of the Carling Cup and FA Cup early season matches alone? I think I remember reading that he will be let go at the end of this season, but I figured I would put him on this list anyways.

Now that I have picked out four current reds to send packing away from Old Trafford, I suppose I should recommend a couple players to be brought into the Theatre of Dreams in hopes of bolstering the squad. Some you have seen named here already.

Juan Roman Riquelme – I remember when Boca Juniors sold this midfield maestro to Barcelona. They were touting him as possibly the next Maradona or something. The very next season he was loaned out to Villarreal if I am not mistaken, which is where he is currently, running their offense and supplying a former United striker, Diego Forlan, with passes and crosses and goal scoring chances. He might be able to provide that midfield presence that United so desperately needs. He would be able to control the midfield and route the attack through him. Not sure how much he would have cost if Villarreal made the Champions League Final, which they had a very good chance of doing against an over achieving Arsenal squad. Rumor has it that United have already offered $8 million for him.

Mahamadou Diarra – The only problem with this guy is that Lyon are so insistent that he not leave their squad, that they are slapping a ₤24.5 million price tag on him in hopes of scaring off any possible swoops for him. It is unclear at this time if the sale would go through or not, but from what I have read, this is a guy who could revive the engine room of the mighty Man United attack.

That is it. I suggest that the United brain trust start to re-examine what the squad needs rather than which players they want to keep. Hopefully they will start bring in players for roles that need to be built up and strengthened, instead of resigning players who either can’t play or do not add anything to the needs of the club.


Post a Comment

<< Home

Office Depot Coupons
Office Depot