Buidling Dreams Together


Manchester United Season Preview 2023/24

Premier League football is back and so are Manchester United. Erik Ten Hag will be looking to build on last season’s success following their 3rd place finish and lifting the Carabao Cup, their first trophy since Jose Mourinho’s first season in charge where United lifted the Community Shield, EFL Cup and Europa League. Nevertheless, United’s build up to the season has been somewhat tedious – ongoing rumours of whether or not The Glazers are selling the club to either Sir Jim Ratcliffe or Qatari businessman Sheikh Jassim Bin Al-Thani, a process that has been ongoing since November of last season. This week the club are also expected to announce their decision of their outcome on Mason Greenwood, which is expected to be announced before their first game of the season against Wolves on the 14th.

With the uncertain speculation over Greenwood and the proposed takeover of the club, United have continued to show ambition in the market. Andre Onana replaces David De Gea in goal, with the 27-year-old Cameroonian better suited to the way Ten Hag wants to play, with De Gea leaving the club altogether having won the Premier League golden glove last season. It was the right-time to move the Spaniard on, with constant mistakes in games costing United in recent years, with the FA Cup final defeat against Manchester City said to be the final straw. Mason Mount arrives from Chelsea with a point to prove after a disappointing campaign last season, with even more pressure added with Mount taking the famous no 7 shirt at United, which in recent years has lost it’s meaning, with the England international hoping to recapture his stunning form from two seasons ago, where he played a starring role in Chelsea winning the Champions League.

Furthermore, the signing of Denmark striker Rasmus Hojlund is an exciting one, albeit he will miss the first three Premier League games with a back injury, but the pressure will be on his shoulders, with United failing to materialize a move for Tottenham striker Harry Kane who was their main forward target. With Kane looking likely to stay at Spurs for potentially one more year, Hojlund will become the main focal point of attack when he returns, as Marcus Rashford prefers to play on the left-wing, and the club can not rely on Anthony Martial, who is not wanted by any club in world football and missed United’s entire pre-season due to injury.

The club are also prioritising moves for another centre-back and a midfielder. The likes of Fred and Donny Van De Beek are in talks with Fulham and Real Sociedad respectively, with Fiorentina’s Sofyan Amrabat expected to come in once those two are shifted. Scott McTominay’s future is also unclear with interest from West Ham, who have also agreed a fee with the Red Devils of £30m for England defender Harry Maguire. Maguire looks to set to finally leave United after two disastrous seasons, with social media and fans at Old Trafford booing him in pre-season, whilst Ten Hag stripped the defender off the United captaincy in favor of Portuguese midfielder Bruno Fernandes.

This has led links to three defenders to replace Maguire. Bayern Munich’s Benjamin Pavard, OGC Nice’s Jean-Clair Todibo and Bayer Leverkusen’s Edmond Tapsoba are the three names linked with the club, with it most-likely to be one of Pavard or Todibo to come in, with Tapsoba also been-linked with a move to Spurs. Pavard is seen at the moment as more-likely, due to his versatility and ability to play as a right-back, but until sales of players are pushed-through it is a wait and see.

It is another big season for Ten Hag. Whilst the ongoing situations of the takeover and Greenwood would have been distracting, he has been ruthless in the transfer market and his decision to get rid of the likes of De Gea and Maguire have impressed the majority of United fans, whilst his signings have shown promise – he has gone for players that he believes will fit the way that he wants to play – Onana with his distribution and ball-playing ability allow United to play out from the back, which wasn’t able to happen last season due to De Gea’s nervousness and having no ability with the ball at his feet. Mount will be seen as a key cog, due to his workrate and is a player that Ten Hag himself has wanted to coach for sometime. The Dutchman tried to bring Mount to Ajax before he moved to Derby having seen him at Vitesse in the Eredivisie.

Hojlund albeit not Ten Hag’s main striker that he wanted, offers hold-up play (better than Wout Weghorst might I add), and has the ability to become a world-class striker under his guidance. IF Erik can turn Sebastien Haller from a West Ham flop to someone who outscored Erling Haaland in the Champions League at Ajax, just imagine what he can do with Hojlund, who is only 19.

The transfer window has been great – pre-season has looked good. Now it’s time for Ten Hag’s United to get the ball-rolling again.