Manchester United have a lot of ground to make up on their ‘noisy neighbours’ if they want to mount a significant and sustained title challenge next year.
In typical Mourinho style, it looks as though he’s going to try and bridge that gap by spending big this summer.
Certainly, a top class centre-back is in order at Old Trafford. United have also already confirmed the signing of the Brazilian, Fred, to bolster their already well-stocked midfield.
There is certainly plenty of competition for spaces in the middle of the park. The Red Devils generally line up with a 3-man midfield under Mourinho, and the manager has to contend with Matic, Pogba, Herrera, Fellaini, Mata, McTominay and now Fred vying for those vacancies.
This squad depth could be key to United making themselves a silverware worthy force in the Premier League once more.
It’s initially hard to see how Herrera fits into that maelstrom of midfield talent, and the Spaniard may well wave goodbye to Old Trafford this summer.
If the 28-year-old sticks around though he could well become an under appreciated yet hugely significant component in Mourinho’s plans.
Herrera is probably the most selfless of the midfielders at the manager’s disposal.
Herrera can often be seen at Old Trafford sitting deep, shielding the defence and keeping his side’s possession ticking over in a metronomic fashion for the good of the team. This may go against Herrera’s natural attacking instincts, but the midfielder’s ability and willingness to stick to his designated role is a valuable trait.
He may not get the press attention and plaudits of his more explosive teammates who get the engines firing and the pistons pumping, but Herrera is the one preventing the wheels from coming off.