Manchester United’s squad is sizeable and some players will need to move on in the new year.
Here we consider three that Ralf Rangnick would be wise to wave goodbye to, potentially bringing in some decent money in the process.
United have plenty of forwards and, at this stage, Anthony Martial seems to be the odd man out. At his best, the Frenchman is a brilliant forward. His 79 goals and 50 assists since moving to Old Trafford are testament to his talent.
For a while under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, it seemed everything had clicked for the £36million man. 23 goals and 12 assists in a single campaign is a great return. But that’s as good as it got for the 26-year-old.
He has fallen short ever since, and seven goals in all competitions last season tells its own story.
With a contract until 2024, Martial will generate a decent fee if he is sold. And that may be best for all parties.
United can get some cash to strengthen their midfield, while the forward can find a club where he can hopefully rediscover his best form. The talent is certainly there, he just needs to show it. With his agent telling Sky Sports that he wants to leave, a January exit seems almost certain.
After fighting back from injuries, Phil Jones will be hoping to get back into United’s team. But the simple fact is, his time at Old Trafford has passed.
With four quality centre-backs ahead of him, Jones needs to move on to get regular football. He will not command much but, with a contract until 2023, he should generate some cash.
United may release him for nothing. But too often the club miss out on money when every penny counts. Even if Jones leaves for a few million, it could be reinvested in the squad.
Still only 29, Jones could do a job for another Premier League side if he stays fit. Given his history, that is a big if. But he deserves a shot. We should sell him now and wish him the best.
Many United fans are still bemused by the decision to give Juan Mata a new contract. The fact he has barely featured this season only adds to that confusion.
The Spaniard has been a fine servant to the Red Devils. But his influence has been waning for years and he is no longer necessary.
At 33, and still with plenty to offer the right club, Mata should move on in January. There is no point sticking around for another six months when he can leave now and play.
Much like Jones, United may not get much for Mata. But they can get something.
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