Manchester United can sign their perfect Anthony Martial replacement for free this summer

It wasn’t that long ago that Manchester United’s pursuit of a striker turned out to be a straight shootout between Harry Kane and Victor Osimhen.

The two goalkeepers had cemented themselves at the top of the club’s shortlist, with Tottenham Hotspur star Kane earmarked as manager Erik ten Hag’s top target back in March. Napoli ace Osimhen was also under serious consideration and the Reds’ supporters were optimistic that the club’s striker search would be solved with the addition of one of these two.

But now that the window is officially open for business, United’s search for a striker is wide open and it is virtually impossible to predict who will spearhead the club’s attack on the opening weekend of the 2023/24 campaign. United are working under the assumption that Tottenham will not sell Kane, despite his contract expiring next summer, and the continued uncertainty over the takeover means it is not yet clear how big Ten Hag’s transfer budget will be.

This means United are respectfully forced to consider lesser options than Kane and Osimhen, such as Atalanta ace Rasmus Hojlund and Randal Kolo Muani from Eintracht Frankfurt. While both are talented players, they are not yet in the same category as Kane or Osimhen, who scored 63 goals between them this season.

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But even if United are lucky enough to bring Kane, Osimhen or a striker of similar standard to Old Trafford this summer, there is a general consensus that Ten Hag may need to bring in an additional striker to provide both competition and support. United played 62 games this season and it resulted in many members of Ten Hag’s squad running empty-handed towards the end of the campaign, pointing to their lack of strength in depth.

As well as wanting to strengthen his first-choice starting XI this summer, Ten Hag also need funds to bolster his overall squad, which is why two strikers could be necessary. However, the prospect of two strikers coming through the door could all hinge on Anthony Martial’s future.

As reported by the Manchester Evening News back in February, United are open to selling the Frenchman this summer. He is currently the club’s only out-and-out striker, following the end of Wout Weghorst’s loan spell from Burnley.

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