Manchester United should look to sign France international Paul Pogba or Belgium's Radja Nainggolan to inject energy into their midfield, according to former player Paul Ince. As Louis van Gaal's replacement, Jose Mourinho made Ivory Coast international Eric Bailly his first signing but – as his next move in the transfer market – is being urged to make improvements to his midfield.

Manchester Evening News understand that Mourinho made signing Pogba among his summer's top priorities. The 23-year-old left Old Trafford in 2011 after failing to agree a new contract and has since become a central figure for both Juventus, who value the midfielder at £73m [€100m], and Euro 2016 hosts France.

Nainggollan has been heavily linked with a move to Chelsea, who are plotting a third bid close to his £35m release clause, in order to tempt him away from Roma. The 28-year-old will feature for Belgium at the European Championships and his Italian club will hope he can impress to help ratchet up his valuation.

Despite tying Michael Carrick down to a new contract, Ince believes United need to add dynamism to their midfield in order to match Leicester City's Premier League title winning pair Danny Drinkwater and N'Golo Kante.

"United need someone to energise them in the centre of the field," Ince told the Manchester Evening News. "That wasn't a Manchester United midfield last season, there were no legs in the department.

"In the last two campaigns, under Louis van Gaal United have been very light in midfield. It was slow and ponderous. You look at Leicester City winning the title and what did they have? In midfield they had two players prepared to give the team that energy in N'Golo Kante and Danny Drinkwater.

"Not the most obvious stand-out players around. They were not your glamorous names but they did a stunning job for Claudio Ranieri. You have to have those kind of players in a team if you want to be successful.

"United didn't. They were far too slow and easily overrun. There was no steel, there was no pace, no runners, no power. There was no Roy Keane or Patrick Vieira in the middle taking control."

"Every club would want Paul Pogba. Without doubt he'd be one name who'd provide the answers for United. He is a fantastic player with the power and strength Mourinho must get back into that engine room. I also like Roma's Belgian Radja Nainggolan. Whoever the player is it is a must problem for United to solve."