Mass recruitment drive could hamper United's chances of a 21st title, says Graeme Souness
Tuesday 26 May 2015 12:42, UK
Sky Sports’ pundits Jamie Redknapp and Graeme Souness say there is plenty of work to do if Manchester United are to push for the Premier League title next season.
Redknapp was responding to Wayne Rooney’s claim that recent performances illustrated United were within touching distance of reclaiming the Premier League crown they last won in 2013.
In an exclusive interview with Sky Sports pundit Gary Neville, Rooney said: “We are close to the title, there’s no doubt about it.
“As a group of players, myself and the manager, we all believe we’re close and I’m sure with a player or two in the summer we will have a good chance of going for the title.”
However, after reviewing United’s season, Redknapp believes there are more questions from this season than answers, and United are a long way short of securing a 14th Premier League title next term.
“I think it has been a decent season for United, nothing more, nothing less,” Redknapp told Football Special.
“There are a lot more questions than answers; (Angel) Di Maria, (Robin) Van Persie, obviously (Radamel) Falcao is going to go, the goalkeeper, it’s going to be a transitional period again for United next season.
“I don’t think they are close to winning the title next year. I don’t think they will go close.
“When you look at the quality players, some of them, like Di Maria, have not achieved what they should have done this year. Do you carry on with him or do maybe sell him? That’s the difficulty they have.
We’re close to the title, there’s no doubt about it. You can see in our performances we’re outplaying teams, dominating possession in games and we have to take our chances. As a group of players, myself and the manager, we all believe we’re close and I’m sure a player or two in the summer we’ll have a good chance of going for the title.
“Van Gaal is the right manager for Manchester United but I still feel they are a long way off.”
Fellow pundit Souness mirrored Redknapp’s claim, suggesting the Reds may be hampered by a large recruitment drive in the summer.
“United would have to have a big, big season (to win the title) and I don’t think they are capable of that,” Souness said.
“It's OK saying: ‘we need to strengthen here and we need to strengthen there’. It is all right if you can get them.
“The type of players Manchester United will be going for will be top players playing at top clubs. That’s the level that will improve them and they might not all be available.
“You might get one out of the four you want, two out of five perhaps but you’re not going to make all you changes in one go.”