A summer of changes and transformations begins to gather pace at Manchester United.
Since Erik ten Hag officially took over as manager last Monday, former caretaker boss Ralf Rangnick has left the club and Andy O’Boyle has been named United’s new deputy director of football. United supporters are now expecting so many changes to be made to the squad in the coming weeks.
The transfer window officially opens on June 10 and United are ready to be active, with several positions in need of strengthening. The club have already been linked with a number of potential new additions, including Barcelona’s Frenkie de Jong and Leeds ace Kalvin Phillips, with strengthening the midfield department a top priority.
READ MORE: Frenkie de Jong responds to Manchester United transfer interest
But it’s not just in midfield that United need fresh blood. He also needs reinforcements at the back, both on the right side and in the center. Ajax ace Jurrien Timber is heavily linked with a move to Old Trafford, while Villarreal ace Pau Torres is already of high interest.
Torres has been tracked by the club for a long period of time and the Manchester Evening News understands that Ten Hag has been consulted about the possibility of signing him this summer. The Spaniard, who played a key role in helping Villarreal reach the Champions League semi-finals this season, is considered one of the best centre-backs in La Liga and is reportedly valued at around £50m.
So if United were to lure him to Old Trafford, especially without the lure of Champions League football to offer him next season, it would be a huge statement of intent. Tottenham Hotspur have also been credited with interest in his signing recently.
That said, if United were to secure his signature this summer, it can almost be guaranteed that many supporters would want his name on the back of their 2022-23 replica jerseys. But what number would he claim if he joined United?
The 25-year-old currently wears Villarreal’s number 4 shirt, a number he has worn since returning from a loan spell at Malaga in 2019. He has worn it for each of the last three seasons, meaning that possibly may like to continue the trend at Old Trafford.
At the moment, the number 4 shirt is occupied by Phil Jones at United. However, his future at the club is in serious doubt and it is very likely that he will be signed this summer. Therefore, if he leaves the club, Torres could claim the responsibility of being United’s new number 4.
Jones has worn the number 4 shirt for over a decade, returning to it in 2011 following his arrival from Blackburn Rovers. Before that, the number 4 jersey was worn by Owen Hargreaves, Nemanja Vidic and Juan Sebastian Veron.
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