ESPN has offered an update on Manchester United’s pursuit of long-term goal Declan Rice.

They report that there are conflicting opinions about the England international among senior figures at Old Trafford.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is apparently a huge fan of the midfielder but others have doubts.

Specifically, it’s about whether Rice is fast enough both with and without the ball.

(Craig Mercer / MB Media / Getty Images)

There are also apparently concerns about how well he would compliment Scott McTominay.

Some seem to think he could just replicate what the Scottish international brings to the table.

The concerns also concern West Ham’s valuation of Rice, which is valued at around £ 90 million.

For this money, everyone should be completely in agreement from a recruiting perspective.

Since this is not currently the case, United is apparently looking for cheaper alternatives that could play abroad and anchor the midfield.

(Justin Setterfield / Getty Images)

Are United’s concerns justified?

There are a couple of factors that need to be picked up here. Rice is a fantastic young midfielder with a lot of experience in the Premier League. He could be an England international for the next ten years and he would be a big upgrade for Fred.

With him at McTominay’s side, United would have a formidable physical midfield duo, both capable of playing disciplined roles or defending the demands of the game.

But price is an important factor. We’ve been writing for a while that it might be worthwhile for United to look for more affordable options in midfield.

Another thing to consider is that Rice apparently wants to change his game so that he is more like Yaya Toure and moves forward from midfield.

What United needs is a disciplined moderator, though it’s hard to understand why he’s not fast enough. Rice is a great athlete and will only get better as he matures.

It will be interesting to see if alternative midfield goals emerge in the coming weeks and months, and how they compare to Rice in terms of their characteristics and affordability.

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