Rene Meulensteen thinks Man Utd are “one top striker away” from challenging from the Premier League title.
United made huge steps in the second half of last season and with Bruno Fernandes at the helm they managed to finish in third spot.
They were still 33 points the champions Liverpool though and former United assistant Meulensteen believes United will have to have a good start to the season and make sure they do not lose any ground on the leading contenders.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has already drafted in Donny van de Beek from Ajax in a deal worth £40m and Meulensteen says Solskjaer must now go and get a striker – and name-checked Harry Kane as the perfect man.
Speaking to talkSPORT, Meulensteen said: “Obviously, there was a big, big gap there last year. And I think the gap started sort of in the early part of the season.
“What is vitally important is that Manchester United are going to have a really good start to the season so they don’t lose any ground, they are in there and they keep competing.
“Because that will grow the belief. I think we are maybe another good signing away; I keep saying they should bring in a really top, top striker.
“I think, for instance, if you were able to get Harry Kane – I don’t think they would be able to get him – I would say yes, they will compete for the title next year.”
Pogba future debate
Meanwhile, Danny Murphy has suggested that Paul Pogba will leave Old Trafford now Van de Beek has arrived.
Meulensteen though is not so sure.
“I can see where Danny is coming from, in terms of playing basically three attacking-minded midfield players in one midfield,” Meulensteen added.
“In certain games, you can get away with it because good footballers will always find a way to play with each other.
“But if you come up against stronger opposition, then they will leave themselves short defensively because they are all not really defensive-minded players. I can see where Danny comes from, so to insinuate does that mean Paul Pogba is gone? I’m not too sure.
“I think there has been so many speculations over the past two seasons, when it came to the end of last season it became a bit more obvious that Ole made it clear he wanted to keep Pogba. I’m not too sure whether he will go.”