After witnessing constant improvement under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer in all competitions, Manchester United will look towards the 2021-2022 season with a sense of optimism and confidence. Since the last few seasons, we have seen United’s focus on youth development and we don’t expect it to change anytime soon. After another close yet the trophy-less season, United will aim to put that straight and put up a serious challenge for the Premier League. In this article, we will take a look at how United can line up in the new season.
Goalkeeper: Dean Henderson
The young England goalkeeper is expected to retain his first-team spot ahead of David de Gea. Despite the Spaniard’s heroics in past seasons, it is believed that his best years are behind him and the focus will shift to the future with Dean Henderson.
Right Back: Aaron Wan Bissaka
Despite rumours of a new right back signing, we expect Aaron Wan Bissaka to hold his place. It is believed that the philosophy behind a new right back is to push the £50m Englishman, similar to what was achieved with Luke Shaw and Alex Telles.
Centre Back: Harry Maguire (c)
This is probably one of the few positions that are set in stone at Old Trafford. United’s captain and the world’s most expensive defender will retain his place in the side, especially after his notable absence in the Europa League Final. After a strong campaign with England at the Euros, Harry Maguire will be itching to get back on the field to seek glory with Man Utd.
Centre Back: Raphael Varane
Manchester United are heavily linked with Real Madrid and French defender Raphael Varane. With just a year left on his contract and a lot of uncertainty with regards to a new one, he will likely be following Sergio Ramos at the exit door of Los Blancos. United have wanted to sign Varane for over a decade and this might just be the summer when it becomes reality. A fee of around £40m is being rumoured and the partnership with Harry Maguire can easily be comprehended as the best in the League.
Left back: Luke Shaw
The resurgence of United’s sometimes criticised, injury-prone yet talented left back has been something out of this world. Luke Shaw’s attacking potential was unleashed this year and in no time he became England’s first choice left back. Entering his peak years in the best form he has been in at United will certainly increase his confidence. With 3 assists in the UEFA Euro and a goal in the final, Luke Shaw will certainly hold his place in the side and aim at living up to his new nickname of “Shawberto Carlos”
Central Midfield: Scott McTominay
Ever since his arrival, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has placed a lot of faith within Scott McTominay, and rightly so. The young lad has about everything in his game – be it passing, acceleration, hold up play, tackling, or even shooting. Scott McTominay will likely be sitting at the base of a three-man midfield with the potential to get front as well. Despite interest in Declan Rice, United are unlikely to pay the huge asking fee of £100m, especially given the fact that they can reinforce their defence by signing Varane.
Central Midfield: Eduardo Camavinga
United’s interest in 18-year-old French wonder kid has taken newspapers and media outlets by storm. The Frenchman has posted superb stats such as 89% passing accuracy, 72% tackles’ success, 4.5 tackles per 90 minutes and 0.7 interceptions per game, even surpassing Scott McTominay. Along with his versatility, awareness, stamina and pressing, Camavinga also fits into the club’s philosophy of building a young team. Moreover, with the uncertainty surrounding Paul Pogba’s future, signing Camavinga can be a smart move as Pogba has just a year left on his contract. This signing can help United in offloading an ageing Matic and increase the attacking threat compared to what Fred offered.
Central Attacking Midfield: Bruno Fernandes
Another of their undroppable players, Bruno Fernandes will be United’s main man up front given his remarkable impact on the team. With a stellar season and staggering figures of 28 goals and 17 assists in all competitions, the Portuguese will be hungry to win trophies for the Red Devils. Fernandes is expected to ink a new deal soon as a reward for his tremendous form and leadership. United will continue to possess with the backup of Danny Van de Beek, with his game time most likely to come from a Fernandes injury.
Right Wing: Jadon Sancho
Finally, United have been able to sign their long-overdue transfer target Jadon Sancho. It is important to mention that they have been able to save £30m on this signing, which will relieve him of the pressure of being the club’s most expensive player. With 19 goal involvements this season, Jadon Sancho is expected to be a regular starter with the backup of Daniel James.
Left Wing: Marcus Rashford
United’s homegrown darling and a hero is expected to retain his position on the left side of United’s attack. After enduring a hectic season with a niggling injury, Rashford will aim to get back to his best soon. Although he might need surgery for a shoulder injury, it shouldn’t rule him out for long and the position can be filled by Anthony Martial in the short term.
Centre Forward: Mason Greenwood
One of the huge rewards of acquiring Jadon Sancho is to finally switch Greenwood to the Centre Forward position, which is expected to be his best. After registering a large number of goals from the right, Greenwood has all the makings to be a top-notch Centre Forward with qualities like strong left/right feet and the ability to thrive in less space. Edinson Cavani’s contract extension will provide invaluable experience and 10-15 starts based on the type of opponent, especially with his successful first season.