Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has indicated he will push for Manchester United to sign a striker in January.
United were left short handed after the transfer window after selling Romelu Lukaku and loaning Alexis Sanchez.
Solskjaer told ESPN he does not disagree with the departures, but he does regret not being able to sign a replacement.
He said: “It was time for Rom to go. He knows that. He didn’t want to be here. What is the point in having players that don’t want to be here?
“There were strikers, but they weren’t the ones we wanted. We couldn’t get the one we wanted.
“You don’t have to be a rocket scientist to see that next time we’re going to recruit – we’re looking for some creativity and goals.”
Injuries have hurt United, with both Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial out of Monday night’s game with Arsenal.
It is fortunate Mason Greenwood has stepped up so well, but this is a big challenge for him.
Putting pressure on the board
Solskjaer’s comments put pressure on the board to deliver, and Ed Woodward will be in for a deluge of criticism if United end the January transfer window empty handed.
For now though, it is a long way off, and Solskjaer has to live with the decisions which have been made.
His critics will point out that he might not even make it to January, and United need to start picking up wins, starting with Arsenal tonight.
His comments are a shot across the bow to both Rashford and Martial, who cannot hide behind injuries. If they cannot be relied upon, then United clearly need reinforcements. United’s players need to respond.
The problem is that Solskjaer had a whole summer – and months leading into it – to identify and sign a striker. If it was known Lukaku wanted out, why not be proactive?
The January transfer window is notoriously difficult to do business in, and there is just one month. It is good United are thinking about it now, but there is a strong possibility that ‘the right player’ is not available.
Players are less available mid-season than they are in summer, and more usually expensive as a result.
Work needs to be done behind the scenes to ensure Solskjaer’s comments are not empty promises, while United should not be swayed either if Martial or Rashford bounce back and hit a purple patch in December.
We desperately want United to sign another striker and an attacking midfielder, but we have become so used to the club failing to deliver, that we won’t be surprised if January 31 hits and all we hear are excuses.
Solskjaer’s words will be held against him if that is the case.
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