After eight months at the helm of Manchester United, Erik ten Hag has a pretty good idea about areas which need to be upgraded ahead of next season.
The Red Devils have been a transformed lot under the Dutchman with the Carabao Cup already added to the trophy cabinet while the club are set for the Europa League quarterfinal against Sevilla with a trip to Wembley beckoning in the FA Cup.
However, their chances of being in the title run-in in the Premier League was sadly snuffed out and it was a timely reminder to the Dutch boss that there are many areas in need of improvement.
Modern GK needed
The most obvious one is up front where the club lacks a reliable goalscorer but the manager will also be aware of the need to strengthen in goal.
Ten Hag’s style involves playing a high line in order to squeeze the opposition. And for that to be possible, the goalie has to be adept at sweeping and passing.
But sadly, United No 1 David de Gea is not a modern keeper. Shot-stopping is his forte and even though that is also on the wane, it still remains his primary attribute.
But when it comes to passing out from the back and sweeping and even claiming crosses, the Spaniard has failed at those miserably.
Ten Hag has refuted claims that he is unhappy with his shot-stopper and has said that the Spain international is improving, but he needs someone who is ready to take on the challenge.
The Red Devils have been linked with Brentford’s David Raya extensively with the Bees goalie indicating his unwillingness to sign a contract extension.
Spurs lead the chase for Raya
His contract is up in 2024 and United could potentially land him for £30-40million. But it seems Tottenham Hotspur are leading the chase at the moment as they seek a long-term replacement for skipper Hugo Lloris.
According to TeamTalk, “They will allow him to leave, though only if the price is right.
“Raya’s people remain confident that the interest in him will see a bid come in from a big club. They believe he is very high on Tottenham’s wish-list to replace Hugo Lloris.”
Brentford are prepared to keep him and lose him for free if they do not receive a satisfactory offer. United should be trying to beat Spurs for the Spaniard.
Raya’s ability to pass out from the back and his sweeping have seen him leapfrog De Gea in the Spanish national team and could happen at United as well.
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