United set to lose experienced quartet
Manchester United could lose four players with more than 2,000 games between them in the summer, without recouping a transfer fee to help fund their rebuilding.
Captain Nemanja Vidic, who made his 288th appearance in Sunday’s 2-2 draw with Fulham, announced last week that his eight-year stay at Old Trafford will end in the summer when his current deal expires.
Fellow defenders Patrice Evra and Rio Ferdinand are also out of contract at the end of the season and it is increasingly likely that neither will stay.
Ryan Giggs, the most decorated player in United’s history, is on manager David Moyes’ coaching staff but the 40-year-old is another whose playing deal expires in the summer.
The Welshman signed a new contract on March 1, but is yet to put pen to paper on a similar deal this season.
Giggs has made a record 959 appearances for United since making his debut in 1991. Ferdinand, a 2002 signing from Leeds, has played 445 times and Evra, who joined from Monaco in 2006, 367, giving the quartet a combined total of 2059 appearances.
In addition, there are doubts over the future of Wayne Rooney, who reached 400 appearances for United at the end of last season.
The striker is out of contract in 2015 and, if no extension is agreed, United may have to consider selling him in the summer to prevent him from leaving on a free transfer.
But a source told ESPN that although there is no timescale for their completion, Rooney remains in contract talks with United.
Rooney hinted that he would remain at United by targeting Sir Bobby Charlton's club record of 249 goals. He has scored 208 so far, and told the BBC: "It is a great aim for myself to try and get Sir Bobby's record, both at club and international level.
"It is something I would like to do. If I can do that I would be really proud, because it has stood for a long time."