Ruud van Nistelrooy should have been sold to the highest bidder at the end of last season, and the proceeds should have been used to buy a midfielder (with Smith reverted back to a striker and Rossi promoted to the first team).
At 30 and after a season in which he saw little football after February, Ruud’s value is low in the transfer market. A footballer’s reputation is only as good as his last game, and Ruud has suffered a horrible few months of football.
At the very least, the man would have fetched somewhere around 20 mil last season. With that much money, how hard do you think it would have been to buy a decent midfielder? Heck, with that money we would have been able to buy two midfielders, or a midfielder and a striker.
But Ferguson said no. Nistelrooy wanted to leave last year, and Ferguson said no.
He ignored the fact that it was the perfect time to sell Nistelrooy – Rooney was improving and he would never get a better price for Rudd than at that point. Ruud’s departure would have been strongly felt, but the signing of two players as replacements would have given the team much more confidence. Bringing in van der Sar was necessary, surely, but we missed out on a couple of good deals last summer, and we’re paying the price this time around.
And while we’re at it, some prescriptions for United’s troubles. Unless we can swap Nistelrooy for Hargreaves, let Ruud go to Real, keep Rossi and Ben Foster in the team, forget about Carrick and Kuszczak and focus on buying two midfielders who can replace Keano and eventually, Scholes. My picks are Hargreaves and Nolan, although Ferguson seems to be looking at Vieira first, and possibly Gattuso as well. Whether Ferguson has thought of buying an attacking midfielder I don’t know – but I know this much that he is looking at buying two midfielders, and that these two recruitments will take priority over everything else.
Funny how we’re panicking so much this year as compared to last season. But then again, we had Keano in the squad (even though he kept getting injured and getting angry at Ferguson’s soft treatment to the younger players)…