Manchester United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer told Sky Sports this week that he may look to add another striker this summer.
While most took that as a nod to Harry Kane, The Telegraph report it could be Danny Ings, with United reportedly enquiring about the Southampton striker.
Ings is not Harry Kane, and this will seem like United doing business on a budget, but that is part of the attraction of signing the Saints forward, providing he is a complimentary part of the puzzle, as opposed to United’s main transfer.
The big dilemma with chasing Kane is that United would likely have to give up on signing Jadon Sancho. The two mega money transfers would be near impossible to conclude in the same window.
Sancho is a special talent who would fill a big need on United’s right wing. The club have waited two years to sign him and should not walk away now, with Dortmund finally ready to sell.
Six fewer league goals than Kane in two years
Edinson Cavani has signed a contract extension, meaning United are not desperate for a striker.
There’s a case that considering Cavani’s age, one is needed, with question marks over Anthony Martial’s quality and desire. Ings is a gamble worth taking, with just one year left on his contract he could be very reasonably priced.
In the past two seasons Ings has scored 34 Premier League goals. Harry Kane has 40.
Kane is quality, but is he really worth an extra £100 million?
Kane has played 30 league games or more just once in the past three seasons, with injuries hurting him. Ings has two serious injuries in the past, but he appears to have overcome them and is a better player for it. At a far lower cost, he represents less of a gamble.
At 28-years-old, or 29 from July, Ings still has plenty left to offer. Nobody is arguing he is a better player than Harry Kane, but he could be superior value.
Ings and Sancho works better than just Kane
Moving for Ings still enables United to sign Sancho. Both players could be signed for around the price Dortmund were seeking for Sancho alone last summer.
On his own, Ings is just a moderately exciting transfer target. But if a major fee is spent on Sancho, then compromises need to be made elsewhere.
Ings is Premier League proven, affordable, and would add strong competition up front and valuable cover for Edinson Cavani, who won’t be able to start all 38 league games plus cup competitions.
You don’t know what you are going to get out of Anthony Martial, and while there should be improvement on this season, United can’t bank on it.
A move for Ings along with Sancho allows enough funds left over to be spent on a defensive midfielder or a centre-back, both of which should be key priorities.
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