Manchester United are reportedly trying to sell as many seven first team players in January, as Ole Gunnar Solskjaer attempts to trim his sizeable squad.
The Red Devils have caught the eye this summer following an impressive transfer window, having secured the signings of Tom Heaton, Raphael Varane and Jadon Sancho, as well as one of the most high profile deals in recent times with the shock return of Cristiano Ronaldo.
Those incomings have added to an already immensely talented and expensive squad, with manager Solskjaer seemingly having international level depth in every position, while the forward line, in particular, looks full of exciting attacking options.
As ever, however, the club did struggle to part ways with certain individuals and have been left with a somewhat bloated squad for the current campaign, with the £25m sale of Daniel James to Leeds United the only real notable permanent departure.
The report suggests that Solskjaer and co are keen to raise funds to bolster the transfer kitty and are willing to axe a selection of players who are next expected to feature heavily this season.
One unsurprising name on the list of potential departures is Donny Van de Beek, the Dutchman having been an almost anonymous figure since his £40m arrival from Ajax last summer, with his only start this season – away at Young Boys – seeing him substituted at half-time.
Fellow midfielder Jesse Lingard is also said to be up for grabs with his contract expiring in June, even though Solskjaer has insisted he will be a United player next season – the Englishman having played a more prominent role in the early weeks of the season and netted in the 4-1 win over Newcastle United last weekend.
The report in the Sun says that centre-back duo of Eric Bailly and Phil Jones are also in line for an exit, despite the former having only recently signed a new deal, while the latter still has just under two years remaining on his existing contract and is currently stepping up his return to fitness after a lengthy absence.
Parting ways with both men, however, does seem highly unlikely as it would leave only three senior centre-back’s in the squad, as well as highly-rated yet untested teenager, Teden Mengi.
Such exits are also unlikely due to the difficulties of the January market in which few clubs look to recruit new additions, thus meaning United are likely to be unable shift most of these names, even if they desire to move them on.
Meanwhile, the likes of Diogo Dalot and Alex Telles represent the only backup options in their positions – right-back and left-back – so any exit would likely rest on whether or not the club can secure a replacement.
The final name on the list is that of Anthony Martial, the Frenchman potentially one of the more likely departures, with the club already having an abundance of attacking options, particularly following the return of Ronaldo, although securing a significant fee could prove challenging.