Manchester Unted are expected to complete a number of deals prior to Friday’s 11pm deadline.
Sources at various Football Agencies have, however, revealed the expectation is for United to be far more active in the closing days of the summer window than the club is indicating.
The suggestion is Old Trafford officials are “under-promising ahead of the possibility of over-delivering.”
This constitutes a promising development for United fans, who have seen their side endure a tough start to the season.
A pulsating 3-2 comeback win against Nottingham Forest still displayed many of the same weaknesses manifested in United’s opening two fixtures. While the resolve to fight back from going two goals down after four minutes is commendable, being in that position in the first place will be an issue Erik ten Hag is contemplating this week.
Forest’s opener, in particular, demonstrated his side’s soft belly once again.
Taiwo Awoniyi broke on a counter-attack from United’s corner in an effort that was as devastating as it was simple to execute. Marcus Rashford, inexplicably the last line of defence, meekly lost a challenge with the Forest powerhouse before Andre Onana rolled over in embarrassing fashion to let him score.
The ease with which Awoniyi was able to cut through the heart of United’s team was reminiscent of the sea of orange shirts in the opening fixture against Wolves.
United have been fortunate to win both games, but a team with more ruthless attackers will put them to the sword if afforded the same opportunities.
This is why the continued pursuit of a midfielder over the next few days may prove pivotal to the rest of the season.
United have been linked with Sofyan Amrabat across the entire summer, while Ryan Gravenberch has also become a concrete option in the last few weeks. Reports indicate United may sign both if suitable deals can be struck.
Casemiro has painted a lonely figure at the base of United’s midfield at times over the past three games. The Brazilian has looked every bit of 31 years of age in the face of more energetic opposition midfielders without any help in the middle.
A midfielder such as Amrabat would help buttress this unit, while a player like Gravenberch would help progress play from deep and unburden Casemiro.
United continue to be linked with reinforcements at left-back as well. The injury to Luke Shaw, which may rule the England international out for two months, is a huge blow for Ten Hag, exacerbated by the existing injury to Tyrell Malacia.
A host of fullbacks have been linked to Old Trafford in recent days, with Fabrizio Romano suggesting Marc Cucurella is chief among these targets.
Manchester United and Chelsea spoke on Saturday about Marc Cucurella loan deal, as revealed yesterday. 🇪🇸 #MUFC
Understand Chelsea are open to letting Cucurella leave on loan but only at their conditions (loan fee/salary coverage).
Up to United, as they’ve 3 options for new LB. pic.twitter.com/IMEI9zfP4J
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) August 27, 2023
The former Brighton has not adapted well to life at Stamford Bridge, and a short-term relocation to Old Trafford, on loan, may help him revitalise his Premier League career.
There remains, therefore, the possibility United make multiple moves over the coming days. The backup goalkeeper position appears a certainty, but these reports suggest a left-back and not one but two central midfielders may be on the cards.