Man Utd news: Only one ‘proper hero footballer’ at the club, says Paul Ince

Manchester United are not short of big names with Bruno Fernandes, Marcus Rashford and Paul Pogba in their ranks (Picture: Getty Images)

Paul Ince feels Manchester United have failed to sign or develop ‘proper hero footballers’ and believes only Bruno Fernandes could fit that bill in the current squad.

The Red Devils are enjoying a solid campaign, sitting second in the Premier League, but only realistically have the Europa League as possible silverware, with Manchester City running away with the league title.

The team appears to be slowly and steadily improving under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, but Ince believes it is lacking the level of player United have enjoyed in the past.

Clearly that is the case as Manchester United are not challenging for trophies like they did during the epic tenure of Sir Alex Ferguson, but Ince believes even some of the biggest names in the squad are not comparable to the heroes of the past.

The former United midfielder blames recruitment for this, but also singled out Marcus Rashford as a homegrown player that is not quite up to the standards of the past.

‘Too many times in the past we’ve seen players come in and fail. I think when you such big amounts on players, they’ve got to hit the ground running like Bruno Fernandes has,’ Ince told Ladbrokes.

‘Man United have always had teams that are full of heroes; from Eric Cantona to Ryan Giggs, Roy Keane to Bryan Robson, but you look at the current team and you’d have to say Fernandes is the only one at that level at the moment.

‘The fans love Marcus Rashford; he’s a Manchester boy and I love him as well, but when you look at proper hero footballers, Fernandes is the only one at the moment.

‘Man United have always had teams full of heroes but right now it’s just Fernandes. They’ve got to get back to that level, where they’ve got the right kind of players, those leaders, across the pitch.’

Ince believes that smarter recruitment is needed to solve this problem and looking for more hidden gems in the transfer market.

That is easier said than done, but Ince feels his former club need to work harder in this area.

Amad Diallo

18-year-old Amad Diallo signed for Man Utd last summer for a fee that could rise to £37m (Picture: Getty Images)

‘It’s a tough ask,’ Ince continued. ‘And it’s not a cheap task at a club like Manchester United. As soon as United are interested in a player, another £10million is added to his value.”

‘For Man United, they’ve got to do their homework and really spend time studying a player for a couple of years. I understand it’s tough because you always worry that someone else is going to come in.

‘But if you keep studying players around the world and you’re doing your homework, you’ll bring in the right personalities. Man United can’t afford to just keep spending £50million on players that aren’t going to hit the ground running.’

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