Man United still have transfer pulling power, says Solskjaer

Manchester United are regularly offered high-profile players because of the club's stature, according to manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

Manchester United manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer   -  Getty Images

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer believes Manchester United can still attract top players and claims the names offered to the Premier League club would "surprise" outsiders.

United appear set for an aggressive approach to the upcoming transfer window as they seek to overhaul a struggling squad that is falling behind in the race for Champions League qualification.

Ander Herrera, Juan Mata and captain Antonio Valencia are among the players soon to be out of contract, while Romelu Lukaku, Paul Pogba and Alexis Sanchez have been linked with moves away from Old Trafford.

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The possibility of several departures and United's failure to crack the top two for the fifth time in six seasons could lead to an influx of fresh faces and manager Solskjaer is confident high-calibre players are within the club's reach.

"In the long-term planning we have to think that we might be in the Champions League next year - there's still a chance - and we might not be," Solskjaer said.

"You would be surprised how many agents have been telling us their players would love to be part of Man United in the future.

"That's just the lure of Man United, the potential and size of the club, that we will get back to the good days.

"Yes, we have had a few seasons that haven't been up to the standards we expect, but players still want to come to Man United.

"You [might] be surprised the names that get [put forward]."

United's recent misdealings in the transfer market are believed to be behind the club's push to employ a sporting director, with former Red Devils defender Rio Ferdinand the latest to be linked to the role.

Solskjaer, who has presided over a difficult run of results since being appointed manager on a permanent basis, said the newly created position would not diminish his responsibility.

"I'll have the final say if players come in or go out," he added.

"We've got regular meetings [about transfers]. I'm happy with the way it's going. We're supposed to be signing 250 players!

"Hopefully we can get in players that haven't been written about. You never know."

Faith in de Gea intact

David de Gea is determined to prove he remains a world-class goalkeeper and will start against Huddersfield Town on Sunday, Solskjaer confirmed.

The under-fire Manchester United keeper has been spared from fresh selection pressure after reserve shot-stopper Sergio Romero sustained a knee problem in training.

De Gea has seen his first-choice status called into question after committing high-profile errors against Barcelona, Manchester City and Chelsea in April.

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While Solskjaer did not confirm whether De Gea would have retained his place for the trip to John Smith's Stadium had the experienced Romero been available, he is also not wavering in his support for the Spaniard.

"He will play," Solskjaer said at the pre-match news conference. "Sergio was injured yesterday so didn't train. He tweaked his knee.

"David has been training well this week.

"Of course we trust him, he's been fantastic this season. Towards the end of the season he's been in the headlines for maybe the wrong seasons, but he's got to deal with that.

"The goalkeeping department is fantastic, they're a tight-knight group. They've experienced better times obviously, but [David] is ready for Sunday. He's confident and is looking forward to the next two games.

"David wants to prove what a good goalkeeper he is. With his performances over the years, David has all my confidence."

Asked whether a fit Romero would have inherited the gloves, Solskjaer responded: "Ifs and buts and hypothetical questions. Sergio knows he how highly I rate him."

United, winless in four matches in all competitions, sit sixth in the Premier league, three points adrift of fourth-placed Chelsea with two games remaining.

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