Danny Welbeck told he can leave Manchester United

Danny Welbeck has been told by Louis van Gaal he can leave Manchester United, with the decision ultimately up to the striker as there are two years remaining on his contract.

Van Gaal’s decision may cause some surprise as the new manager wants to play a 3-5-2 formation that would seem to require four forwards in his squad to provide competition and to mitigate against injury. With Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie the first choice pairing, Welbeck was thought to be ahead of Javier Hern├índez as the third striker of the current quartet.

However Van Gaal may have decided to look at promoting James Wilson, the 18-year-old who scored twice on debut in last season’s 3-1 win over Hull City in May at Old Trafford.

There has been speculation that Welbeck may move to Hull, with the forward thought to cost around £20m, but it is understood that the Humberside club is not high on the player’s list of potential destinations.