The sheen of the Brugge win didn’t last long. No sooner was Louis toasting, and potentially smooching, Depay, were United being gazumped by Chelsea for Pedro. If nothing else, this looks bad for Ed Woodward.
Andy Mitten, a Barcelona based Red, tweeted yesterday that Pedro had been keen to come to United for a month. The fact that Chelsea were able to swoop late and decisively makes us look dithery again. But it might not be the end of the world.
Nobody expected United to sign either Schneiderlein or Darmian this summer yet both have started superbly. There was plenty of talk about Hummels and other big names but would United be better off with them? Palpably not.
Those who see United linked with Southampton’s Sadio Mane are right in thinking he is a step down from Pedro. Even a chill of shame that it feels a bit desperate. But looking at the other players Van Gaal has brought in should provide food for optimism.
In recent years, you have been able to divide Manchester United fans into two distinct categories. Those who hate Wayne Rooney and those who don’t. Leaving aside the vitriol, and yes – it was a bad performance against Aston Villa, he will come into form. His work rate is supreme and he is always a nightmare for people to play against.
Ironically, I thought the person who would benefit most from Pedro’s arrival would be Rooney. He is at his best when his position in the team is under threat and the better the calibre of his teammates the better he tends to play.
We should also not write off the personnel already in the squad. If Pochettino can take a chance on Harry Kane and watch him score 30 goals, why can’t we do the same with James Wilson. He has the trickery and the pace of a young Michael Owen and, if given the chance, could cause havoc this season.
Hernandez is also an extremely potent weapon. Giggs has convinced LVG to give him another chance and the Mexican knows he needs to impress to keep his career at the top level.
Losing Pedro to Chelsea looks bad, but it might just be bad PR, United will score a lot of goals this season with or without a new striker.
Follow Mark on twitter.com/markjpayne