Manchester United were keen on Idrissa Gueye earlier this summer but failed to push home a deal for the veteran midfielder.
The Senegalese international is one of the best defensive midfielders in Ligue 1. More so, he also has the experience of playing in the Premier League. Gueye spent four seasons in England with Aston Villa and Everton before moving to the French capital in 2019.
United’s recruitment negotiator Matt Judge was focused on landing the 32-year-old amidst concerns regarding midfielders Nemanja Matic and Paul Pogba. The former is past his prime while the latter’s future at the club is far from secure.
Judge, for his part, believed Gueye would be open to a move to Old Trafford. His belief was based on the assumption that the player’s game-time in Paris would be compromised thanks to them signing Georginio Wijnaldum. United, however, failed to push on with their interest and make an offer for the Senegalese’s services.
It is a decision that could prove costly for the club this season. Manchester United have just one specialist defensive midfielder in their ranks in Matic. And, Gueye would have been an excellent addition to Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s United squad. He is an excellent passer of the ball and is not afraid to put in a tackle when needed. His aerial prowess would have added yet another dimension in the middle of the pitch.
While he may be 32, the midfielder does have a few good years left in him. PSG are already benefitting from United’s lack of driving home their interest. Gueye has in fact thrived despite Wijnaldum’s presence and scored four times in ten appearances for the French giants this season. Time will tell whether United missed a trick.
Securing Gueye would not just have added depth to United’s midfield but also added a player with a different set of skills to what they have on their roster. His calming influence in an anchoring role could have provided the Red Devils’ attacking talents with a solid base to push forward and wreak havoc.
Solskjaer and co. have brought well in recent windows, addressing a number of key weaknesses to different degrees. Manchester United, however, can do with another defensive midfielder and the quicker they act, the better their chances of gaining balance on the field.