Writer: Arab Jacques
Date:Sunday November 26 2006
Craig Levein has sent his spies out this weekend, searching for a select group of players which could help Dundee United`s assault on the SPL table in the 2nd half of this season.
42-year-old Levein has made no secret of the fact that he intends to bring in several new faces in the January window and the newspapers have gone into overdrive linking every available player with a move to Tannadice.
Ideally, the new United manager wants to boost his options upfront by bringing in a new striker, preferably someone who can reverse the Tangerine`s goal drought and return them to winning ways.
Robbie Winters, Mark de Vries and even Steven Pressley have already been linked with United, but with money in short supply, its likely that Craig Levein will bring less well known players to the club.
Players like the less well known Cowdenbeath midfielder Morgaro Gomis who is currently on a 2 week trial, Gretna`s Kenny Deuchar or former Celtic striker Gary Arbuckle, currently with 1st division Clyde.
The 22-year-old scored twice in Clyde`s 4-0 win over Queen Of The South yesterday, making it 3 goals in 2 games after previously netting in the 1-1 draw with Partick Thistle through the week.
Perhaps Craig Levein might even consider making a move for Saint Johnstone`s Jason Scotlan....though after the farce about his work permit that forced the player out of Tannadice last year, would he be allowed to return to the club - is he now considered good enough for the SPL, scoring 10 goals in 19 games this season?
Whoever he goes for, Craig Levein is likely to have many players to consider after his coaches and other officials from the club made the most of Saturday afternoon to take in games up and down the country.
"I will try to go to a game and I expect to make a few trips as the transfer window gets closer," said Levein.
"I have had loads of names thrown at me but, for example, the likes of the English market is difficult because of the wage levels."
Levein had considered taking in a few matches south of the border, but attending the training session at Tannadice on Saturday morning made it difficult to reach some of the more interesting ties in England.
"I was going to head down to England and I still might, but being here for training in the morning means I`m limited in terms of how far I can travel," Craig told the Evening Times earlier this week.
"We`ll all be taking in matches and it will be a mixture of looking at future opponents and players, it is a good chance for us to take in games and we will make the most of it."
Assistant Peter Houston & coach Tony Docherty were taking in matches yesterday afternoon and are likely to make a full report back to Levein about potential signing targets after the Saint Mirren match is out of the way.
Although, Levein has hinted that he is planning to use a technique employed by his predecessor Jim McLean when re-building his side & will concentrate on sorting out his defence, before bringing in more attacking players.
"We are looking to keep building from the back, although it is not something that is going to happen overnight," he told the Courier.
"There are one or two areas of the teams needing strengthened, though, and come January I hope to do just that."
One of the areas Dundee United are lacking in is the height department, with a side that doesn`t boast many giants in defence or attack.
Speaking about this weekends match against St Mirren, Levein told the Courier "We have to recognise that we don`t have a big 6 ft. 4 in. striker we can bang the ball up to, so we have to be creative."
Perhaps bringing in a more creative player like Charlie Miller could help, or perhaps England striker Peter Crouch is available to join United`s frontline?
Date:Sunday November 26 2006
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