“Man United need at least two modern strikers to give team more quality. Liverpool and Man City have five or six – we don’t have many.” Damming comments from Ralf Rangnick just hours after his Manchester United side put three past Brentford to earn a rare victory.
“Mason Greenwood would have been but after West Ham he wasn’t part of squad”, Rangnick added.
— Fabrizio Romano (@FabrizioRomano) May 2, 2022
Whilst some sceptics may argue that Ralf Rangnick has been overly vocal in his criticism of Manchester United in the last several weeks, little of what the German has said has been wrong.
Manchester United currently have just two senior strikers on their books. One of which is Edinson Cavani, who has spent most of 2021/22 ‘injured’ or unfit, and is due to leave the club for free in June anyway.
The next is Cristiano Ronaldo who, whilst still able to score goals on a regular basis, is very much in the twilight of his career and is unlikely to stay at Old Trafford beyond 2022/23.
This leaves Manchester United with just Anthony Martial as a somewhat natural centre-forward option. However, it has been clear for a while that the writing is on the wall for the Frenchman in Manchester.
So, with the summer window fast approaching, it is clear Man United need to invest in at least one centre-forward. But who should they target? Well, 101 have picked out four options below.
Victor Osimhen (Napoli)
The first option Manchester United could target is Victor Osimhen of Napoli.
The 23-year-old has excelled in both Ligue 1 and the Serie A, and is one of the most well-rounded forwards in Europe at present.
Osimhen is a lethal combination of pace, power, height and clinical finishing, which has led to him scoring 17 goals and providing six assists in 29 outings so far this term.
Such impressive form does look to come with a pretty hefty price-tag, however, with it suggested over the last few months that Napoli would demand between €80m-100m for the forward – making him probably the most expensive option on this list.
Jonathan David (Lille)
At 22 years of age, Jonathan David is the youngest option on this list, yet he has already developed into an incredibly deadly finisher.
Whilst David lacks the height and some of the power of Osimhen, the Canadian is very fast and, most importantly, is very much a two-footed centre-forward, making him a superb finisher.
David has scored 17 for Lille this term, with three of those goals coming in the Champions League.
Sebastian Haller (Ajax)
Whilst some United fans may turn their noses up at Haller after his uninspiring stint with West Ham, incoming Manchester United boss Erik Ten Hag has really been able to get the best out of the Ivorian since he made the switch to the Netherlands.
Haller has scored 20 and assisted seven in 28 league games this term. But what has been most impressive about Haller at Ajax is his sensational record in the Champions League, netting 11 and assisting two in eight appearances.
Granted, Haller is not what you would really describe as a ‘modern’ striker, but his goal-scoring record under Ten Hag is surely enough to earn him a chance in Manchester.
Moussa Dembele (Lyon)
Moussa Dembele is the final option Manchester United could look to target. The Lyon hitman is very the definition of a modern striker, combing his pace with some excellent finishing.
The 25-year-old has scored 24 and assisted seven in all competitions for Lyon this term, and has also previously proven himself against the best side in England.
Dembele came on for the final 15 minutes of Lyon’s Champions League quarter-final tie with Manchester City in 2020, and went on to score two goals thanks to his ability to get in behind City’s backline.
Given neither Ronaldo nor Cavani are able to do this at present, having someone like Dembele in United’s team would give them a lot more options.
This article was edited by Ben Browning.