Paul Ince claims Mario Mandzukic is not the answer to Manchester United’s goalscoring woes and insists his former club should focus on younger talent instead.
United have endured their worst start to a season in 30 years as they are 12th in the Premier League table with only nine points from their first eight matches.
The Red Devils have also been struggling for goals having scored only nine times so far in the league and so manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer may look to sign a striker in the January transfer window.
Mandzukic is the Old Trafford outfit’s top target and Express Sport understands a verbal agreement has been struck between United and the Croatian, with Juventus demanding a £9million fee and an £85,000-a-week contract on the cards.
However, Ince insists that senior players like the 33-year-old, as well as former United striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic, are not the answer to the team’s attacking woes and urged executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward to instead focus on signing younger players.
The former midfielder added that the January window doesn’t tend to offer the right solutions because no one sells their best players at that time of year.
Ince told the Daily Mirror: “I don’t think Mandzukic is the answer.
“I feel that you never get your best players in January, clubs don’t sell their best players in January, so whoever Manchester United are going to get is going to be a stop-gap.
“If they’re looking to go down the young route then they should be looking at young strikers, not Zlatan or Mandzukic.”
United lost Romelu Lukaku and Alexis Sanchez to Inter Milan in the summer and Solskjaer opted against replacing them.
Instead, the Norwegian manager placed his faith in Anthony Martial and Marcus Rashford but both forwards have been stricken by injury throughout the campaign.
The Red Devils failed to record a single shot on target against AZ Alkmaar in the Europa League and only managed three strikes in the Newcastle clash.
Ince added: “Against AZ Alkmaar they didn’t have a shot on target – that’s embarrassing.
“Three pathetic shots against Newcastle, that’s embarrassing as well for Man United.”