Former Manchester United captain Gary Neville has branded the club's behaviour in the transfer market "embarrassing" as United appear set for more drama late on in the window.
Gary Neville has criticised Manchester United's activity in the transfer window, arguing that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's team will not catch the likes of Liverpool and Manchester City if it is not significantly strengthened.
"I just don't think they're smart enough," remarked Neville of those charged with doing United's business in the transfer market.
"They're being outwitted in the market by other clubs and if you lose in recruitment then you don't win the league. Simple as that."
Speaking at an OTB Sports Cadbury FC remote roadshow, Neville believes that the club's shortcomings on this front will leave Solskjaer incapable of meeting what is expected of Manchester United on the field also.
"Ole has a period where he can win the league," explained Neville of the demands ultimately associated with the role.
"He has been there one-and-a-half seasons and this is the third he is starting now. He won't be expected to win the league this season but maybe next season, in his fourth, he would be expected to.
"But he can't win the league, it is impossible. You are tying a manager's hands behind his back if you're not giving him the players he needs."
Despite praising the club's policy for attempting to recruit younger players since Solskjaer's arrival, Neville is perplexed at Manchester United's inability to deliver on deals.
"I just don't think they're smart enough and wise enough and agile enough in the market," he stated, before drawing attention to their ongoing attempts at signing Jadon Sancho from Borussia Dortmund.
"It is embarrassing, it has been going on for about four months now and it is just embarrassing. To put a bid in that gets rejected, smarter clubs have everything sorted beforehand and when the bid goes in it is accepted.
"Who puts bids in nowadays that doesn't get accepted? That doesn't happen that often. I know that it happened with Leeds United and Ben White, but they knew the player and were just trying to apply some pressure probably.
"Generally, clubs have the deals sorted before a bid goes in. It smacks of... I don't know, it just isn't great."
Solskjaer's breaking point
Although Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's managerial credentials have been a routine source of scrutiny, Neville, a supporter of the Norwegian, has been more recently surprised by the manager's own frustrations.
Ahead of Sunday's Premier League tie with Jose Mourinho's Tottenham Hotspur, Solskjaer, when questioned about United's transfer activity, somewhat cryptically stated that the club knows his view on what needs to be done.
"For him to say that," explained Neville of his former teammate, "that's as near to him going rogue as you can get.
"He is a club man, loves the club and would never go rogue really, but I took those few words to be quite important ones."
“ They Know My View “ !!!!! https://t.co/oZLBrvuR4m
— Gary Neville (@GNev2) October 2, 2020
To United's further detriment, Gary Neville hasn't but been able to admire how Liverpool and other Premier League clubs go about their business by comparison.
"I was reading this morning about how Liverpool have accepted a bid for Rhian Brewster of £24 million from Sheffield United," he noted. "They're not just buying smart, they're selling smart too.
"I look at Chelsea and they're buying smart and they've seemed to sell smart over the last 15 to 20 years. Manchester City spend a lot of money but they get things done.
"Whereas United just don't seem to be able to get their deals done."
After Jurgen Klopp's side have made a successful start to their Premier League defence with three wins from three games, Neville admitted that he cannot foresee any club troubling them on that front this season.
Nevertheless, this is only further proof that United's approach in the off-season has been lacking compared to that of their rivals.
"Looking at Liverpool on Monday night," he noted of their 3-1 defeat of Arsenal at Anfield, "they're at a different level to the likes of Manchester United. They've only gotten stronger.
"So, Liverpool have a great squad, a great team and a great manager. How are Manchester United supposed to close that gap if they don't invest toward it?
"I know they have invested money in the last nine years but, unfortunately, it doesn't stop. You have to keep competing year in, year out."
Keep an eye out across our social channels for the full interview with Manchester United legends Gary Neville and Teddy Sheringham in association with Cadbury FC in the coming days.