The ability of Alexis Sanchez means Manchester United had to be in the market for him, says Denis Irwin, with a deal for the Chilean almost done.
A move to Manchester for the Chilean forward has been on the cards for some time, but it appeared for long periods as though his destination would be the Etihad Stadium.
Old Trafford is, however, set to become Sanchez’s new home, with Manchester City having been pipped to a high-profile signing by arch-rivals United.
The 29-year-old is in the process of finalising a move, with a medical undertaken on Sunday , and Irwin believes the South American will prove to be a shrewd addition for the Red Devils.
The former United defender told Reuters : “When a player of that ability comes along, I think you have got to be in the market for him.
“He’s a player who knows the Premier League, his goal record ... he’s an experienced international. He’s quick, he’s strong.
“It would be great if he comes to Manchester United because he would not just add to our squad but our team. He’s a really good player and I think he will be a good addition, really good.”
Sanchez is being signed to help force United back into the Premier League title picture, with City still heavily fancied to run away with the crown this season.
He will be drafted into a side Jose Mourinho has carefully pieced together, with the Portuguese another of those to have been acquired on the back of a proven track record.
Irwin believes the Red Devils are heading in the right direction under their current coaching team and hopes to see the club deliver on talk of a new contract for the man in charge at Old Trafford .
The Irishman added: “Since he’s [Mourinho] come in 16-17 months back, he’s brought in some really good players.
“He attracts good players and all of them have strengthened us. He knows he’s not there yet but we are getting back to where we should be.
“I feel we are lot more competitive than 16 months ago. For me, he’s been fantastic. Two trophies last season, progression on the field, we are getting better and stronger, I don’t see any reason why not [to give him an extension].”