Former Manchester United defender Lee Lawrence says he is ‘very excited’ by the club’s recent spending but feels they still need experience at the back.
Louis van Gaal has spent well over £200m since becoming United manager a year ago but inherited a team that had finished seventh and just lost the experience of Rio Ferdinand, Nemanja Vidic, Patrice Evra, Ryan Giggs and also Paul Scholes the year before. Replacing those players at their peak in today’s game wouldn’t leave you with much change from £200m and Lawrence believes the club needed to spend.
‘I’m very excited to see United spend big,’ Lee told RetroUnited.com. ‘I was feeling that we were falling behind the other big clubs last few seasons but the players we’ve brought in should put us up there again with the very best.’
United have captured the imagination with the signing of Schweinsteiger and Depay but Lawrence – perhaps, naturally, as a defender himself – feels the Reds ought to concentrate on stablising their back line.
‘I feel like the defence does need strengthening, and has needed it for a number of years,’ Lee says. ‘I’m a massive fan of Ramos and would love to see him at it but also, it’s been a long time since we had a strong no nonsense centre back. We have never replaced Vidic… I feel like if we could get a solid centre back who’s a natural leader it would be benefit us greatly.’
Speculation continues to surround the future of David De Gea but Lawrence believes that it is more important for United to prioritise the defence. ‘De Dea has been immense these last 2-3 seasons, but there are many quality keepers out there. I would prefer us to improve the defence,’ he says.
Lee’s story is one of twenty to feature in ‘Fergie’s Fledglings’ – available to order on Amazon here.