Manchester United have a really small squad and are short-staffed especially in midfield and attack.

The engine room is an important part of the pitch and the players need to have very high levels of overall fitness. This can only be possible with a big squad and enough squad rotation.

In that area of the pitch, they have neither the bodies nor the quality in rotation. They only have four central midfield players in the team and one of them (Fred) looks like has more or less been frozen out.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer clearly has a criteria for recruiting players to play for the club and if you were to go with that, you end up with one particular midfielder that comes to mind and his name is Declan Rice.

He is 20 years old, English and a really talented defensive midfielder.

He has spoken recently about the prospect of playing for Man United in an interview with FourFourTwo:

“Don’t get me wrong, I think I’ve got the ability to play for a club like that.

“But it’s all about the timing, and I don’t think the timing is right for me at all. I’ve still got so much to learn.

“I’m loving it at West Ham. The connection between me and the supporters is special. I’ve become one of the fans’ favourites and the manager likes me.”

He signed a new contract with the Hammers that will expire in 2024 last December and is clearly enjoying life at the London Stadium.

If United eventually decides to go for him, he will no doubt cost a hefty fee but at the same time, they will be getting good value for their money with the Englishman.

When compared with Scott McTominay, another solid prospect in his own right, Rice would be a great addition to the team.

At 20 he already has 65 league appearances under his belt compared to McTominay’s 35 games in total.

Both players are just about equal as regards to pass completion rate but Rice, due to more appearances has more total passes completed, forward passed and touches.

This season, Declan Rice has been the more dominant midfielder defensively, averaging 3.5 (8 in total) tackles per game and 2.3 (9 total) interceptions per game.

McTominay, on the other hand, averages 1.5 tackles (3 in total) and 1.8 interceptions(7 total) per game.

Midfield Trio?

If United do decide to pursue Declan Rice and get him eventually, it will be of good benefit to Paul Pogba.

If both young midfielders play behind him, they will offer protection and give him the freedom to create chances and get further up the pitch.

As far as young holding midfielders go, Declan Rice is the best of the lot in the League. He will definitely be an inspired addition to the young, British core of talents that is currently in the red side of Manchester.

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