Manchester United are linked to transfer rumours on a daily basis at the best of times but after shipping two soft goals against West Brom the mill has gone into overdrive.
United still look a potent force going forward but the defence looks disorganised and frail despite the expensive additions of Luke Shaw and Marcos Rojo.
As such, manager Louis van Gaal is expected to swoop on La Liga in order to bring in a trio of players to beef up his ailing back line.
First on the agenda and top of the list of priorities is Barcelona and ex-United man Gerard Pique, who has fallen down the pecking order at the Nou Camp.
The 27-year-old has enjoyed great success with the Catalan giants but has played just five league games this term under increased competition for places in Luis Enrique’s squad.
Pique is happy to stay and prove his worth but Van Gaal hopes a bid of around £20m will be enough to persuade Enrique to part company with the Spain international.
Staying in Barcelona, United are also hoping to beat a number of Premier League rivals to the signature of Dani Alves.
The 31-year-old has revealed that he will not be renewing his contract with the Catalan club, instead insisting the next chapter of his career will be in “the home of football”.
Some reports suggest the Brazil right back has already signed pre-contract terms at Old Trafford.
The hope is Alves will provide competition for and offer guidance to international colleague Rafael, who is still deemed the long-term choice for United.
United’s last bit of expected business in Spain concerns Barca’s bitter rivals Real Madrid and their much sought-after German midfielder Sami Khedira.
Chelsea manager Jose Mourinho is keen to acquire his former charge in order to use Cesc Fabregas in a more advanced position, while Arsene Wenger’s admiration of the 27-year-old is well documented.
United are hoping to steal a march on their rivals, however, by offering Khedira a £5.5m per year package.
Having played just twice for Madrid since the arrivals of James Rodriguez and Toni Kroos this summer Khedira is said to be open to a move and could find the high wages hard to turn down.
One thing is for sure though, if United’s current defence don’t buck up their ideas before the upcoming games against Chelsea and Manchester City, the number of players linked with a move to Old Trafford will only rise.
All odds and markets correct as of the date of publishing
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