On Monday, May 18, 2014, Manchester United announced that Netherlands manager, Louis van Gaal, will take over as manager after the World Cup. This announcement confirmed speculation that had been surrounding the club for the last couple weeks.
Van Gaal announced that club legend, Ryan Giggs, will retire and become his assistant manager. This was a good decision, and if all of van Gaal’s decisions are as shrewd as this, then he may be a lot more successful than David Moyes ever looked capable of being. Despite there being reason for optimism in the United camp, they still have a squad that underachieved, and van Gaal will be tasked with revitalizing it.
Van Gaal will come into management knowing that some of his players under-performed, whereas, others are not good enough to wear the Manchester United uniform. The first task he will have is sorting out who needs to be cleared out immediately, and who can be given preseason to show their worth. At the same time, he needs to make some bold,exciting, signings, signings that show his intent to win the league. In this article, I have highlighted three players who should not be Manchester United players next August.
Alex Buttner (Left Back): No one should be surprised about this. After watching him this season, I think it’s fair to say that he will never reach the level of being anything other back up in times of injury. Frequently he offers poor delivery, and defensively he is not very sound.
It may seem harsh, he was no worse than any of the other players this season, but he offers no hope of being any better, even at his peak. He is 25 years old, which means he should be starting to show his best form, but he could not displace an aging Patrice Evra, and if rumors of Luke Shaw signing are correct, then there is no place in the squad for him.
Ashley Young (Winger): It might seem that I am picking the easy options here, but that’s because the players I have listed so far have to be cut. Young offers a decent delivery, an infrequent ability to cut in and curl some good shots, but overall he has shown nothing to merit Sir Alex Ferguson signing him three years ago. Sure, in his first season he was pretty good, and I won’t forget his beautiful goals against Arsenal, but overall he hasn’t been worth the money, and frankly, his inability to stay on his feet makes him a laughing stock. I do not think he offers anything that merits van Gaal giving him the summer.
Tom Cleverley/Marouane Fellaini (Center Midfield): This was a toss-up. Both players had poor seasons, and in seasons prior, have shown that they do have ability. Unfortunately, both of them were terrible this season, and I think one of them could face the exit. However, they both have reasons they might avoid this fate.
Cleverley is a United youth product, and United do not like selling them once they have played in the first team. Unfortunately, after a solid start to his United career, he looked a shadow of himself when he suffered an ankle injury. This season, well the less said the better.
Fellaini was Moyes’ first buy, and from the beginning has looked a mistake. I like the way Fellaini plays, but at United he has shown that he does not fit in comfortably. He represents a large outlay by Manchester United, signed for $43 million last August, and because of his poor performances this season, United would be lucky to recoup close to what they spent. If he has a solid World Cup, Fellaini may be given another season.
These are players that I think should leave. Unfortunately, there may not be much of a market considering their performances last season. Cleverley and Young were both bad enough that neither will be representing England at the World Cup. However, van Gaal is a ruthless manager, and I would be surprised to see all of these players at Manchester United at the end of the summer.