5 Domestic Depth Buys at Center Back
Paul Scholes after the game against Newcastle stated that United need a commanding Center Back to compete for a title. United will surely bring in a top rated and pricey Centre Back, but they need depth as well.
If they do bring someone in Lindelof could be sold, even Bailly. Phil Jones has looked destined to leave for months and adds little to the team. Even Axel Tuanzebe could leave on loan, there are rumors that he might. United look likely to shake things up at the position in the summer.
In the last year some big clubs have gone to the Championship and fringe Premier League teams to buy Center Backs. Everton brought in Ben Godfrey from Norwich, Liverpool bought Ben Davies from Preston and Spurs bought Joe Rodon from Swansea.
Here is five potential depth buys that can be cheap for United:
1. Ethan Pinnock- Brentford
Despite losing a plethora of attacking options the last couple of seasons, Brentford are still in the hunt to get promoted. They lost out in the Playoff Final to Fulham last season and currently sit 2nd in the table. The London man began his playing career at Millwall and was released at 15. He signed with non-league side Dulwich Hamlet and played six seasons with the club. In 2019 he signed with Brentford and has been instrumental in the clubs resurgence. He is 27 though, but only would set United back €3 million, maybe.
2. Jarrad Branthwaite- Blackburn (Everton)
Rumors are circulating lately that United are interested in the towering Center Back from Carlisle as well as other top English clubs. Currently on loan to Blackburn from Everton he has only made 7 Championship appearances. Probably one for the future, he only runs for about €2.5 million, not a bad deal. You will likely see more news about the CB in the near future.
3. Adam Webster- Brighton
Everybody wants Ben White, every great performance by Ben White shoots up his price and rightfully so. He will command attention in the market this summer and top clubs have been circling since last summer. His teammate Adam Webster has been getting attention as well, he signed for Brighton from Bristol City in 2019 for €23 million and has made 53 league appearances for the Seagulls. If United lose out on Ben White, Adam Webster could be a useful option at €15 million.
4. John Egan and Jack O’Connell- Sheffield United
I think it is safe to say that Sheffield United are going down. They will try and do their best to hold on to a defense that was the 4th best a season before. At the heart of that defense is John Egan and Jack O’Connell, a lack of goals has rooted them at the bottom of the table as well as defenses injuries. O’Connell has been out nearly all season and Egan recently injured. They will have some chemistry with Dean Henderson who looks likelier and likelier to take the goal keeping shirt off de Gea. Something around €10 million and you can get one of the two.
5. Semi Ajayi- West Brom
Another team that looks likely to go down. Relegation teams do provide some gems, their woefulness rarely can be narrowed down to an individual player and West Brom have a couple of gems on their team. One of those gems could be Semi Ajayi, could Ajayi play for a middle level club? He just happens to play for a bad one at the moment. The Londoner has 24 premier league appearances and 2 goals this campaign. He was instrumental in helping West Brom get promoted last season and could be bought for a cheap €5 million. A nice depth piece for cup games for a big club.
None of these guys are going to slot in a Manchester United starting XI, but they are all probably better than Phil Jones. United are going to probably bring in more than one Center Back and with the current monetary climate they might have to be frugal with depth pieces.