Prior to their season-opening match against Brighton on Sunday, the club has yet to sign a crucial central midfielder.
After United and Ten Hag were able to reach an agreement in principle for the midfielder in June, Frenkie de Jong continues to be Ten Hag's top target. The negotiations are now in their fourth month, but little progress has been made since it became clear that Barcelona owed the players' wages.
Meanwhile, Cristiano Ronaldo has told the club he wishes to leave. When the attacker chose to leave Old Trafford early during Sunday's friendly against Rayo Vallecano, Ten Hag did not hold back his emotions.
However, despite the player's last-week declaration that he wanted to leave, Ten Hag has reaffirmed that the 37-year-old is still a part of his plans. Shearer asserts that if United wants to aim higher than a top-four finish, Ten Hag must resolve the Ronaldo situation and the team must be strengthened through additional signings.
“Manchester United have got a lot of work to do in the transfer market before they can be classed as contenders again."
“United have got a new manager with new ideas, but the squad needs strengthening and, unless that happens, Erik ten Hag might have to use players like Anthony Martial who, last season, were regarded as not good enough for them.”
“There are other problems too. The Cristiano Ronaldo situation has turned into a bit of a mess, and it can’t help Ten Hag to have to continually deal with questions about his future. But I just don’t see United challenging for the title – their aim is just to try to get somewhere near the Champions League places. "
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