Gary Neville has urged Manchester United to move early in the market and sign Gareth Bale as the likes of Manchester City, Arsenal, Liverpool and Chelsea will all be vying for a move to sign the forward in the summer.
Bale is being billed at £100m ($156m) by the Red Devils and would significantly improve their attacking prowess, especially with the 20-time Champions having already secured the services of Memphis Depay from PSV Eindoven.
United were not up to the mark in the second half in their 1-1 draw against Arsenal and barring the goal, were unable to create a single goal scoring opportunity, which hurt them at the end when the north London club scored the equaliser through Theo Walcott, helped by a wicked deflection off Tyler Blackett.
The Red Devils are predisposed to the exit of David de Gea, with the goalkeeper likely to leave the club for Real Madrid in the summer, having refused to extend his contract. The Spaniard is rumoured to have already agreed to terms with Madrid and is set to leave a major void behind at Old Trafford. Neville believes that United should leverage this opportunity and use De Gea in a bit part deal for Bale.
"Real Madrid are particularly aggressive," Neville told Sky Sports.
"They have been previously and once a player only has a year left on his contract Manchester United have a decision to make if Real do come for him, as it looks like they will.
"Manchester City, Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool will all want Gareth Bale. So if you are going to give Real a player I think it would make sense to try and get Bale and steal him in return for De Gea," he added.
The former defender also stated, he expected De Gea to stay given the form he is in, but the Madrid interest had an air of inevitability in it.
"With his form this season I was always hopeful he'd stay but with the wave of noise in the press it just looked to have an inevitability about it," Neville concluded.