3 ways Man Utd could line up with Saul Niguez if Atletico deal is struck

Manchester United are becoming increasingly hopeful of striking a deal that would bring Saul Niguez to Old Trafford on loan from Atletico Madrid.

The 26-year-old seems destined for a move away from the La Liga winners having grown frustrated with boss Diego Simeone over his role in the team.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer remains a huge fan of the Spaniard and is still keen on strengthening his midfield as United look to battle in all competitions this season.

Having blown the transfer budget on Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane, the Red Devils boss is in need of some shrewd transfer business.

The likes of Jesse Lingard, Phil Jones, Diogo Dalot and Alex Telles have all been linked with moves away from Manchester but are yet to find new clubs.

As of now, Solskjaer is strapped for cash with loan deals offering the most likely opportunity to boost his squad.

With an initial loan move looking likely before deadline day, Daily Star Sport has taken a look at where Saul Niguez could fit in for United this season…

4-3-3

Starting XI: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Maguire, Shaw; Saul, Pogba, Fernandes; Rashford, Sancho, Cavani.

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Solskjaer is eager to switch to a 4-3-3 formation to push Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes further up the pitch.

Despite primarily operating as a central midfielder in Diego Simeone's preferred 4-4-2, Saul has played in the holding role more than a few times for Los Rajablancos.

It's widely known the United boss lacks trust in Scott McTominay, Fred and Nemanja Matic to play the role on their own and has earmarked someone to play in the anchor position as a key target this summer.

If Saul were to put pen to paper on a year-long loan move, Solskjaer may have gotten his man.

4-3-3

Starting XI: De Gea; Wan-Bissaka, Varane, Maguire, Shaw; Fred, Saul, Fernandes; Pogba, Greenwood, Martial.

A return to a more central role would see Saul operate a similar position to where Simeone utilised the Spaniard at Atletico Madrid.

Though if Saul were to play there regularly, Solskjaer may struggle to play Saul, Fernandes and Pogba in the same line-up.

But due to Marcus Rashford's injury, the Frenchman has been shifted out to the left-hand side and so it wouldn't be unsurprising to see him stay there for now

Fred comes into the midfield as the most likely candidate to play the holding role if Solksjaer is insistent on using a 4-3-3.

4-2-3-1

Starting XI: De Gea; Wan Bissaka, Varane, Maguire, Shaw; McTominay Saul, Sancho, Fernandes, Pogba; Rashford.

A more defensive-minded formation for when the Red Devils are expecting an opponent to dominate possession.

When fit, Rashford comes back into the side to lead the press with Pogba, Fernandes and Sancho supplying the creative spark.

McTominay is one of two anchormen to break up the play but this is where Saul Niguez could really come into his own.

The link between defence and attack is what the 26-year-old excelled at providing during his time at Atletico and Saul was a key part of their title-winning side last season.

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