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Manchester United News and Notes: Smalling Injured, Sahin Targeted – Fan’s Take

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It's been an interesting week at Old Trafford. With the 2012-2013 season drawing near, Manchester United are busy putting together their roster in hopes of dethroning Manchester City at the top of the Premier League.

Here's a look at what's been going on with the club in the past few days:

Chris Smalling injured

Manchester United defender Chris Smalling will be out for up to 10 weeks after suffering a broken metatarsal in training last Wednesday. On Saturday, July 21, Red Devils manager Sir Alex Ferguson confirmed that Smalling had surgery to repair the injury.

This news is hard to swallow. Jonny Evans is still recovering from an ankle injury, and fellow center back Nemanja Vidic might not be 100 percent by the time the season gets underway on August 20. That leaves the aging Rio Ferdinand and Phil Jones as the only two center backs that Ferdinand can rely on right now. With the opening match against Everton just a month away, I'm already nervous about Manchester United's back line. I can only hope the defense can hold it together until everyone gets healthy.

Interest in Nuri Sahin

On Friday, July 20, Goal.com reported that the Red Devils have focused on Real Madrid's Nuri Sahin. It's believed that Manchester United would have to pay close to £20 million to get sign the Turkish midfielder, which would be about £10 million less than manager Sir Alex Ferguson's other target, Lucas Moura.

Normally, I'd agree that Ferguson should find a less expensive option, especially with the club dealing with its debt issues. However, Sahin has struggled with injuries in the past year, and I'd rather see Manchester United work towards signing a player who has been healthy. Ferguson would be better off spending whatever he needs to spend to get the player that he's wanted all along.

If Moura is as good as Ferguson thinks he is, then the Red Devils' manager should go for it. I'm getting tired of seeing the club settle on less expensive players. Manchester United can't spend money like Manchester City, but they can splurge on a much-needed player once in a while.

Van Persie bid

Last Friday, Ferguson admitted that Manchester United has bid on Arsenal's Robin van Persie. Juventus and Manchester City are also believed to be seeking van Persie's services.

While I have no problem with Ferguson spending some money to bring in a star, I think the club should avoid the Netherlands striker. Van Persie simply isn't worth spending big money on when he's going to be past his prime in roughly three years. Manchester United are better off investing in young talent that will be in Old Trafford five to 10 years from now. I can't say that about van Persie.

Derek Ciapala has been a fan of Manchester United since the World Cup in 1994. His favorite Red Devils' moment is when they won their 19th English Championship in 2011. You can follow him on Twitter @dciapala and Facebook.

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