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United players could go to China
12 Feb 2016 13:01
Ed Woodward believes Manchester United could sell some of their unwanted players to clubs in China this summer.
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While much of the focus has been on a possible managerial change at Old Trafford, it is inevitable some of their players will leave the club at the end of the season, too.
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Although Van Gaal is not blessed with a deep squad, either he or his replacement will want to bring in new faces this summer, so some of the current crop will have to move on.
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Marouane Fellaini, for example, continues to be linked with a move away from the club despite returning to the starting XI for the last seven games, and others could depart.
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Woodward is not fazed by the prospect of losing his top stars to the Chinese Super League, where Alex Teixeira, Ramires and Jackson Martinez have moved recently.
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But China could be used as a tool to get rid of any deadwood that needs to be discarded.
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"I do think there will be more activity coming in the summer, but it is very difficult to predict what kind of impact that will have," United's executive vice-chairman said in a conference call with investors on Thursday.
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"If nothing else, it's another useful market if we are looking to sell players."
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United may be fifth in the table, some six points adrift of the top four, but off the pitch, the club's achievements in the commercial sector remain unparalleled.
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On Thursday, United announced record second quarter figures for the year. United say they are on course to become the first club to earn half a billion pounds in one year.
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There were no questions from investors on Van Gaal, or any possible replacement. But Rio Ferdinand had his say on the matter in an interview with Indian TV station NDTV.
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The former United defender praised Mourinho's track record, but claimed Van Gaal's assistant Ryan Giggs would be a good candidate if the club wanted to stick to its traditions of attacking football and developing young players.
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"Jose Mourinho's name is getting mentioned. If you want someone who's got a career track record in winning in the Premier League and various other countries, then he's that guy," said Ferdinand, who played 455 times for the club during a glittering 12-year spell at Old Trafford.
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"But if you want someone who understands the philosophy, whose respectful of the philosophy, who identifies with the fans, knows the place inside out, who's going to be a bigger risk, then Ryan Giggs is that guy."
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