Manchester United missed out on landing the signature of Idrissa Gueye from Paris Saint-Germain over the summer.
The Red Devils were fancied to sign a defensive midfielder in the last transfer window, and they were linked with several high-profile names.
According to The Mail, the club were keen on bringing Gueye back to the Premier League, and were confident of doing so.
However, they did not make a formal offer for the Senegal international, having failed to offload players to recoup additional funds.
The club could not recoup sufficient funds for a late purchase of a midfielder, but they may look to address the concern next year.
A winter signing could be on the cards for United if they continue to remain inconsistent with their performances in the top-flight.
United are currently fifth in the Premier League standings with 17 points. They have won just one of their previous five matches.