Remember Owen Hargreaves? Remember Bastian Schweinsteiger?
With the season rapidly approaching and Jose Mourinho already at his wit’s end, all eyes are on Arrivals at Manchester Airport.
Harry Maguire and Toby Alderweireld have both been linked with a move to Old Trafford but a third name has been added to the list of potential new centre-backs in the last couple of days — Jerome Boateng.
The Bayern Munich defender has won six consecutive Bundesliga titles, three German Cups, a Champions League, and a smattering of other trophies since Man City sold him in 2011.
A key figure in Germany’s 2014 World Cup triumph, he was also named Footballer of the Year in Germany for the 2015/16 season.
A class act.
Now, here’s why United should absolutely NOT spend any money on him…
A quick history lesson is in order…
Remember Owen Hargreaves?
The only England international with a Canadian accent signed for United from Bayern in 2007.
A broken leg and subsequent muscle issues had disrupted his best form but Sir Alex Ferguson decided to take a risk on him nonetheless.
After an encouraging first season at Old Trafford, a knee problem prompted world famous surgeon Richard Steadman to say that Hargreaves’ knee was ‘in a worse state than any other’ he’d seen in 35 years.
He returned after a 777 day lay-off, and lasted just six minutes before limping off.
Hargreaves never played properly again before retiring in 2012.
You may also remember Bastian Schweinsteiger?
He, like Boateng, reached a peak in 2014 when he helped Germany to glory in Brazil.
United fans were cock-a-hoop when their club signed him in the summer of 2015.
However, it soon became apparent that years of tireless work had taken its toll on the 31-year-old.
Jose Mourinho recognised this and relegated him to the Under-23s.
Schweinsteiger featured in just four games in the 2016/17 season, before being sold to MLS side Chicago Fire.
So what have we learned?
Well, it seems that Bayern have a habit of offloading their players to United at the first sign of physical deterioration.
Boateng hasn’t managed 20 league games in a season since 2014/15, with injuries limiting his involvement in the last three campaigns.
Surely Bayern aren’t going to ship another knackered star to Manchester, for a rumoured transfer fee of £45million no less?
For Ed Woodward and United, it’s a case of fool us twice, shame on you, fool us three times, shame on us.