Former Aston Villa striker Gabby Agbonlahor feels Manchester United need 15 new players if they are to challenge for the Premier League title.
United sit sixth in the table and still have a slim chance of a top-four finish. But the gulf between themselves and the top two was laid bare when Liverpool thrashed them 4-0 at Anfield on Tuesday. That made for a 9-0 aggregate scoreline against the Reds in 2021-2022.
Manchester City beat then 4-1 in March at the Etihad while Pep Guardiola’s side inflicted a 2-0 defeat on their rivals at Old Trafford. Jurgen Klopp’s side are 22 points ahead of United.
But it is not just the points difference that is the issue. Ralf Rangnick’s men look disjointed and devoid of confidence, with Cristiano Ronaldo bailing them out in recent games.
This summer will see a new man at the helm – likely to be Erik ten Hag. He faces a huge task to rebuild the squad into a unit capable of challenging the big boys.
It seems inevitable that there will be many players leaving at the end of the campaign. Big-name stars such as Nemanja Matic, Paul Pogba, Anthony Martial, Juan Mata, Jesse Lingard and Edinson Cavani are likely to depart.
And Agbonlahor believes it is time to sweep the decks and add strength in depth to the squad.
“I know it might sound a lot but 15 players, I’d say,” he told talkSPORT. “They need a better bench. Look at the likes of Man City, Liverpool, and Chelsea – they’ve got two teams.
“Man United have got Luke Shaw, when he’s fit and on form, Bruno Fernandes when he fancies it, [Cristiano] Ronaldo will score goals and maybe David De Gea. The rest of them I’d put on the transfer list.”
Ten Hag clear favourite for United role
Mauricio Pochettino was thought to be the frontrunner to succeed Rangnick at the Theatre of Dreams. However, rumours that the Paris Saint-Germain chief was set to return to the Premier League have cooled in recent times.
The smart money appears to be on Ten Hag, who is hoping to guide Ajax to the Eredivisie title. The Amsterdam giants sit four points clear of PSV with five games to go.
He is fully focused on his role in the Netherlands. But a report in the Daily Mirror on…