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Jadon Sancho and Marcus Rashford out wide? Atletico Madrid star in midfield – How Manchester United could look next season with Rio Ferdinand’s three dream signings

The coronavirus pandemic came at the worst possible time for Manchester United.

After a difficult first-half to the season, the Red Devils finally seemed to click into gear before COVID-19 brought all football to an unprecedented standstill.

Solskjaer’s men were on an 11-match unbeaten run prior to football’s suspension
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Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s men, galvanised by the £67million arrival of Bruno Fernandes, went on an 11-match unbeaten run and had narrowed the gap to fourth-placed Chelsea to just three points.

Fernandes had effortlessly adjusted to the Premier League, notching thee goals and two assists in his opening nine matches.

However, Solskjaer will know there is a lot of work to be done to bridge the gap to Man City and Liverpool, who are levels above the rest of the top flight at the moment.

Old Trafford icon Rio Ferdinand recently said that Ed Woodward must get the chequebook out in the summer in order to add more quality to the Red Devils’ squad.

But who did he recommend and how could United line-up with Ferdinand’s three dream signings next season?

Find out below…

Kalidou Koulibaly (Napoli)

Ferdinand said United should go all out to sign their long-term target Koulibaly from Napoli.

The Senegal international has been linked with a move to Manchester United repeatedly in recent years, but the Italian club have so far managed to fend off the interest to keep him at the San Paolo.

Koulibaly has established himself as one of the finest centre-backs on the planet since his move from Genk in 2014, making 173 Serie A appearances for Napoli.

Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is an admirer and was tipped to sign him after he was named in the Serie A Team of the Season at the end of the last campaign.

If he was signed, he would form a rock-solid partnership with Harry Maguire at the back.

Kalidou Koulibaly is regarded as one of the world’s best defenders
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Maguire, who joined United from Leicester in an £80million deal from Leicester last summer, has had a solid first season at the club, having been appointed skipper by manager Solskjaer.

Any deal sealed for Koulibaly would likely see Victor Lindelof displaced in the XI – but United fans wouldn’t complain as the new pairing would certainly be one of the very best pairings in the Premier League.

Koulibaly is understood to be worth around £62m but United may have to go up against rivals Liverpool, who will want a new centre-back to replace the outgoing Dejan Lovren.

Koulibaly has been a long-term target for Manchester United but it is believed a host of top European clubs are keen on signing him
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Saul Niguez (Atletico Madrid)

Ferdinand believes the midfield is an area United simply have to strengthen in, despite Fernandes’ January arrival.

Replacements were never brought in for Marouane Fellaini and Ander Herrera, and with Jesse Lingard also reportedly on his way out of United, they need to flex their financial muscle this summer.

Saul would be a dream signing for Solskjaer, but reports suggest the Primera Division side will only allow him to leave for a sizeable fee.

The fact that the Spaniard also signed a nine-year contract at Atletico in July 2017 makes the move an even more difficult prospect.

The 25-year-old has been a standout performer in Diego Simeone’s side since he broke onto the scene in 2015, scoring 38 goals in 286 appearances.

Saul has been one of Atletico Madrid’s stand-out players in recent years
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Jadon Sancho (Borussia Dortmund)

Speculation continues to swirl about the future of Sancho, who is one of the hottest and most in-demand talents in Europe – but Ferdinand has insisted the club should make him a priority and hand him the legendary no.7 shirt.

The 20-year-old winger has emerged as one of the best players in the Bundesliga over the past two seasons in Germany.

His future is the source of constant speculation, with Manchester United and Chelsea thought to be leading the race for his signature ahead of a possible move to the Premier League this summer.

Dortmund could demand as much as £100m for their superstar, who has 14 goals and 15 assists in 23 top-flight appearances this season.

However, he may decide to stay at the Westfalenstadion and continue to progress with the club where he has made his name.

The fact is, everyone is very excited to see where Sancho ends up as he has all the tools to become one of the very best in the world.

United are frontrunners to sign Jadon Sancho for in excess of £100m this summer

How Manchester United could look next season with Ferdinand’s signings…

Is this the team Ole Gunnar Solskjaer could play next year?

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