According to claims from the Express, Manchester United have agreed a fee of around £10million with Juventus to sign Croatian international forward Mario Mandzukic in the winter transfer window. Manchester United are short of attacking options after the summer sale of big-money striker Romelu Lukaku to Italian club Inter. The Red Devils failed to sign a replacement for the 26-year-old.
Mandzukic does not fit into Solskjaer’s plans
United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been attempting to build a young, dynamic team that plays counter-attacking football. This season the Red Devils have failed to perform and it has led to United slipping to 12th place in the Premier League table.
Mario Mandzukic is regarded as a very good target man, who has a pretty sold scoring record in some of Europe’s top leagues. However, at 33 years of age, he does not fit into the profile of players that Solskjaer wants in his team.
He would prove a short-term solution to a problem that United need fixing for the long-term. However, the signing would suggest that the Red Devils are struggling to attract players in their prime. He is surplus to requirements at Juventus, which suggests that he is no longer good enough for teams playing at the top level of the game.
United in need of a new striker
To be fair the idea of Manchester United signing Mandzukic is likely due to the fact that they have just two senior strikers in 21-year-old Marcus Rashford and 17-year-old Mason Greenwood. The latter is supposedly full of potential and made a splash at junior levels of the game.
However, it is crazy to think that he is back up to Rashford. When United need a goal they have no other attacking options, so usually they send on the youngster. In years gone by it simply would not have happened, as the Red Devils would have numerous senior attacking options.
United obviously put all their eggs in the Rashford basket. The England international is only just learning the game himself. He turns 22 at the end of the month and he still has plenty to learn as a top-level striker. There is even the question of whether he is more suited to playing as a winger than a central forward, as at the minute he is just not clinical enough in front of goal.
Solskjaer needs fresh additions
United boss Solskjaer is one of the favourites to be the next top-flight bosses to leave their positions. The team’s chronic lack of goals has been the crux of their strugglers this season. Many of their games have been relatively tight, where a team with a better finisher may have picked up more points.
No doubt Mandzukic is a decent goalscoring and highly experienced. However, it would be a strange signing considering the bosses vision for the team and future. It seems that Solskjaer may not have much of a say in the future, if results continue in a similar vein, as he will be out of a job.
If the Norwegian makes it to the January transfer window, then Solskjaer will need fresh additions to improve his mediocre squad of players.
Will Mario Mandzukic join Manchester United in January?