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Report: With Di Maria arriving, Manchester United close in on De Jong, Blind

Aug 25, 2014, 9:02 AM EDT

Netherlands v Argentina: Semi Final - 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil AP

With Angel Di Maria currently jetting to Manchester to tie up a record $100 million deal with United, the Red Devils plan on flying in a few more players to wrap up transfer deals before the Sept. 2 deadline.

According to a report from the Daily Telegraph, Dutchmen Nigel de Jong and Daley Blind — both of whom played for new United boss Louis van Gaal at the World Cup this summer — are set to join Di Maria and bolster United’s squad.

[RELATED: United ‘not good enough’]

A potential move for Juventus’ Arturo Vidal is also in the works but the Italian side are reluctant to sale, so De Jong could come in as a contingency buy for around $14 million. As for Blind, he is likely to cost around $20 million as the versatile young Ajax star can play in a variety of positions in midfield and defense and would add some real quality to United’s squad.

[RELATED: Welbeck to Everton?]

If the Red Devils succeed in getting these two players signed on, in addition to Di Maria, can you call their transfer window a roaring success? I’d say so. With Ander Herrera, Luke Shaw and Marcus Rojo on board, the addition of Di Maria, De Jong and Blind plus the culling of some deadwood means LVG will have strengthened his squad considerably. In their opening two games United have struggled with injuries but now that the treatment table is starting to empty and new faces are arriving, there should be a sense of optimism arriving at Old Trafford.

The final week of the transfer window promises to be an exciting one for United’s fan, as van Gaal also looks to move on the likes of Danny Welbeck, Javier Hernandez, Anderson, Shinji Kagawa and Tom Cleverley, who all face uncertain futures.

[RELATED: Carlo Ancelotti confirms Di Maria has “said goodbye” ahead of a transfer]

United’s dramatic rebuild, which they’ve threatened for so long, is inching towards becoming a reality as three new faces could arrive in the coming days.

  1. ryanviohl - Aug 25, 2014 at 9:13 AM

    A roaring success???

    They’ve horribly and drastically overpaid for each player they’ve brought in (with more overpaid signings to come in) and have yet to address any of their real weaknesses, as their backline and midfield are still a complete disaster.

    Can’t believe someone got paid to write this dross.

  2. geejon - Aug 25, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    “Roaring success” is a bit much, I agree. I would use that term if I were to describe Chelsea’s 3 simple signings where Fabregas and Costa were huge improvements over Lampard and Eto’ respectively and Felipe Luis added cover at the back.

    However if United do indeed add Di Maria, De Jong and Blind in this window to Shaw, Herrera and Rojo, it would be hard to argue they didn’t significantly improve the club. Herrera has only played one game and if he’s indeed joined by De Jong, you can’t say that’s not significantly better than the horror show that was Fletcher and Cleverly yesterday or what’s left of Carrick. Herrera will take a year to adjust to the Premier League but he’s a very good player and De Jong will (temporarily) be the physical player the midfield has lacked for years until the club eventually make their move for a more long term option in Vidal or Strootman (which should happen as soon as the January window when both are fit).

    You also mentioned the backline and it’s probably looked worse because of LvG’s decision to play 3 at the back and Shaw missing. They should switch to 4 at the back. I don’t care much for Smalling and Blackett is still too raw but Phil Jones is a good, young player. If he’s joined by Rojo to his left, that’s a solid CB duo. When Shaw eventually returns from injury he’ll take his position at left fullback. Those are 3 good, young players. The team will eventually have to address right fullback.

    Di Maria is world class and will provide the team with the pace it desperately lacks. The price is high, but then he’s a proven commodity still only 26. He wasn’t going to go anywhere for much less.

    The key is to get rid of that 3-5-2. If you spend that kind of money you need to play guys at their strongest positions and neither Shaw nor Di Maria can do that in that formation. The problem is a 4-4-2 doesn’t leave an obvious position for Mata and a 4-3-3 or 4-2-3-1 with Mata in the middle leaves only 2 spots for the trio of Rooney/Di Maria/RVP. Personally I would sell RVP as this team is still 2 years away from contending for a title and he’ll be past his prime by then. Better to get a decent return for him now.

    Either way, a theoretical back four of Shaw-Rojo-Jones-Valencia (until they sign a proper right fullback), midfield of Herrera-De Jong (until either Strootman or Vidal join), and depending on the formation some combination of Di Maria-Mata-Rooney (or RVP)-Januzaj is a solid squad with no real holes that can still be improved. They’ll finish out of the top 4 this year for sure, but I wouldn’t bet against them the following year with another 2 transfer windows after this one before the 2015 year starts.

  3. mikeevergreen - Aug 25, 2014 at 12:47 PM

    DeJong? Seriously, he should be in jail for the number of players he’s knocked out of games with his dirty tackles. Ended Michael Ballack’s international career.

  4. ninamags - Aug 25, 2014 at 3:21 PM

    How about stop spending all this money and actually let the players you currently have get some game time in??

    If Chicharito goes, so do a lot of people who were Man U fans because of him.

  5. dougtt - Aug 25, 2014 at 7:41 PM

    time to grow up,, he’s done it and they are horrible. He could get rid of almost half the team and replace them.
    Hernandez while a nice player isn’t the level of player for a team wanting to be number 1 in the world.

    Use him to bring in a player who can really make a difference immediately

  6. ninamags - Aug 26, 2014 at 1:03 AM

    Well, considering that they won 2 years ago, with the very players he now wants to get rid of, I would say it was a matter of coaching, NOT the players.

    The talent was there until he started dismantling the team…….

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