Five midfielders who may join Manchester United in January

by Sam Peoples

When David Moyes took over as Manchester United manager in the summer, he spoke about how he wanted to add not one but two central midfielders to his squad. Although Moyes and new Chief Exec Ed Woodward tried to bring in some top names, they sadly only ended up with the £27.5 million signing of Marouane Fellaini which left many United fans feeling very underwhelmed.

With the January transfer window just two months away, United fans are hopeful that Moyes will try again to strengthen his midfield.

With that in mind, what targets are likely to be achievable in January?

Lars Bender (Bayer Leverkusen)

Work-rate, stamina, determination and great in the tackle. These are some of the top attributes that have made Lars Bender one of the best midfielders in Germany. The 24 year-old twin brother of Dortmund’s Sven is one of Leverkusen’s key players and has been linked to many top clubs including United.

Although he’s still quite young. Bender has good maturity, displays great tactical discipline and has many other qualities that United’s current midfield is lacking.

He is reported to be valued at around £22 million but if Leverkusen progress to the Champions League knock-outs, then it may be unlikely they would let one of their best players leave midway through the season.

Yohan Cabaye (Newcastle)

The French international is one of the best creative midfielders in the Premier League and is Newcastle’s most influential player. Cabaye joined the Geordie club from the then French champions Lille two seasons ago and proved a bargain at just £4.5 million. He possesses great vision, a superb passing range and is dangerous from set pieces and these attributes would surely add some creativity that is currently missing from United’s midfield.

Arsenal were close to signing him in the summer but opted for Mesut Ozil instead. With Newcastle being a mid-table side, it would be incredibly hard for them to hold onto Cabaye if a big club came in with a good offer now.

Tendayi Darikwa (Chesterfield)

Who? That was the reaction of the majority of United fans when they heard that manager David Moyes was at the League Two fixture between Chesterfield and Fleetwood earlier this month.

Darikwa is a 21-year-old right sided midfielder who is also capable of filling in at right-back and central midfield. The Zimbabwean is 6’2, has good athleticism and his quick feet make him a real threat going forward.

Moyes reportedly watched Darikwa many times as Everton manager so the fact that he is still keeping a interest in him even now as United manager must mean that he thinks the youngster could have real potential.

Ander Herrera (Atletic Bilbao)

Bilbao midfielder Herrera was part of one of the most bizarre transfer sagas of recent years last summer when his proposed move to United fell through amongst all sorts of strange claims.

Sadly for United and the player, the move didn’t come to fruition and Herrera was left in a bit of an awkward situation at Bilbao as some fans and reportedly club officials have given Herrera the cold shoulder after the player was ready to leave the Basque club. As a result of this, he has gone from being a regular in the Bilbao team to a bench warmer in most games so far this season.

The little Spaniard has a good all-round game and like most Spanish players he has excellent technique and awareness.

In the summer Bilbao were adamant they wouldn’t let him leave for less than his £36 million release fee so its hard to imagine they’d weaken their stance in January even though he’s not playing regularly.

Koke (Athletico Madrid)

Take a look at our report on Koke here.

Do you think Manchester United will sign any of these midfielders this summer? Let us know you think we might sign in January.

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