Manchester United have already been pretty busy in the transfer market yet, with the gossip peddlers linking them to further purchases, their business may not yet be concluded.
Defenders and particularly midfielders make up the bulk of the intrigue as the Red Devils seek to bolster their squad ahead of the 9/10 rated top-four finish push.
In the latest instalment of news.bwin.com/en/’s Out of Contract Club we look at some intriguing potential acquisitions who United might nab at knock-down prices thanks to their contracts expiring next summer.
Sergi Roberto – Barcelona
The La Masia scholar, linked with an Old Trafford switch last summer, accrued his fair share of admiration in central midfield during four seasons with Barca’s B team from the age of 16.
A fundamentally attack-minded midfielder, who executes his diverse passing range with an unerring accuracy, Sergi is also a proficient ball winner, willing to graft when the opposition have posession.
At 22 years old he’s a first-team squad member at Camp Nou, but all bar one of his 19 league appearances over the last three seasons have come from the bench and the offer of regular starts could be hard for him to turn down.
Andrea Ranocchia – Inter Milan
Something of a rumour mill darling, the Nerazzurri’s Italian international centre-half has been linked to Chelsea and FC Bayern Munchen this season.
Towering over mere mortals at 6ft5in, the Inter skipper is already adept at helming a three-man backline having done so under Walter Mazarri at Giuseppe Meazza.
Ron Vlaar – Aston Villa
Another central defender adept at operating as part of a defensive trio, the Villan is someone rather more well-known to United boss Louis van Gaal.
Heroic in the Netherlands’ World Cup semi-final loss to Argentina, big-hearted ‘Concrete Ron’ leads by example and could take over Nemanja Vidic’s first-to-every-ball brief at Old Trafford.