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If ever Jose Mourinho needed a reason to spend big next summer, then it was unequivocally highlighted during the 2-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley.
Manchester United were clobbered, outpaced and overrun in midfield by a Spurs side that has often underachieved yet entertained in equal measure.
Christian Eriksen opened the scoring after a remarkable eleven seconds in what was the joint third fastest goal ever scored in the Premier League. Phil Jones summed up United’s torrid night in the English capital by completing an exquisite finish in the 28th minute- against his own goalkeeper.
Despite having a formidable attack, what comes from the attacking line can only be as good as the midfield that compliments it.
A veteran in the game, a loyal servant and a stalwart; Michael Carrick has been a gem having won every piece of silverware throughout his stay 12-year stay at Old Trafford.
With the announcement of his retirement at the end of the season and subsequent admission into Jose Mourinho’s coaching staff, United are left with a huge void that has to be filled.
The winter transfer window has been a success with the acquisition of Alexis Sanchez through a straight swap deal that saw Henrikh Mkhitaryan switch to North London, but the bulk of the work is poised to be addressed in the summer.
Whilst there is the argument that Manchester United still have the likes of Paul Pogba, Ander Herrera, Marouane Fellaini , Nemanja Matic and academy graduate Scott McTominay to fill the void, only the introduction of ‘fresh blood’ would suffice since the current midfielders had their places even with Carrick playing regularly.
Fellaini contract hold
Marouane Fellaini’s latest injury sustained during the loss to Spurs only adds to the uncertainty surrounding his future at Manchester United.
The 30-year old- who is currently in the last year of his contract- notably rejected a new deal at the beginning of the season; one that could pave way for a potential exit in the summer on a free transfer.
Given the ever lingering possibility of essentially losing two midfielders in the summer, Jose Mourinho should move swiftly to sign a reputable central midfielder as he grooms McTominay for the future.
United are reportedly keeping close tabs on Borussia Dortmund’s Julian Weigl, with Jorginho of Napoli and Jean Michael Seri of Nice as probable targets.
Written by Brian Humphrey
Follow Brian on Twitter @brihum
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