And just like that, with one swish of Gyfli Sigurdsson’s boot, the bubble that had been expanding around Manchester United all summer was burst.
The Red Devils’ 2-1 opening day loss at home to Swansea City demonstrated the difficulty of the task facing Louis van Gaal, and the Dutch manager now more than ever knows the need for new recruits at Old Trafford.
Van Gaal has found it as hard to push deadwood out the door at his new club as he has to bring in new faces, but according to the Sunday Times, two birds might be about to slain with one stone.
Sporting Lisbon, current home of United target Marcos Rojo, have reportedly asked for Portuguese winger Luis Nani on loan as part of any deal for the 24-year-old Argentine.
Given his ineffectual showing against Swansea, United should be tripping over themselves in trying to get that deal done, and it might be worth trying to chuck Anderson on the plane too.
Both players have impressed in Portugal early in their career, but are apparently part of a rumoured United ‘bomb squad’ currently forced to train away from the first-team.
Meanwhile Rojo, who can play either at centre-back or at left-back, would be a savvy addition to a Red Devils’ squad trying to come to terms with Van Gaal’s 5-3-2.
The Argentine played at left-back for his country as they reached the final of the World Cup, but his best position could be as the left centre-half in a three-man backline.
As demonstrated by Phil Jones’ frequent rampages forward against the Swans, the centre-backs in this system have to at ease with the ball at their feet and able to contribute going forward.
Rojo fits the bill like a glove, and his performances at left-back in Brazil, where he scored once and created nine chances in six games, confirm his attacking credentials.
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