This summer Manchester United have spent £98.85 million on 7 new players. They have also earned £72.28 million from their outgoing players.
Goalkeeper, 28 years old, Argentinean, Free Transfer from Sampdoria
Romero had a good start to his United career, only conceding a bizarre own goal in 5 games. But in the 2-1 loss against Swansea he looked particularly amateur. It’s quite risky keeping him first choice considering his lack of domestic football over the last 2 seasons.
Right Back, 25 years old, Italian, £12.6 million from Torino
The signing of Darmian, has possibly been United’s most important as it’s successfully filled the gapping hole at right back, that hasn’t been suitably manned since Gary Neville retired about 4 years ago.
Defensive Midfielder, 25 years old, French, £24.5 million for Southampton
He is an incredible defender of the defence, always throwing his body on the line to stop incoming attacks. He’s a fantastic team player, and what the Red Devil defence really needed.
Central Midfielder, 30 years old, German, £6.3 million from Bayern Munich
World Cup winning, boss of the midfield was a steal from one of the best teams in the world. He may not be as fit as he used to be but he’s still a quality player and will play a key role in United’s title push this season.
Left Winger, 21 years old, Dutch, £19.25 million from PSV Eindhoven
A fantastic young winger, beaming with confidence and is always looking to score. He’s already a great player, and is only 21, so will vastly improve in the coming seasons.
Centre Back, 17 years old, Welsh, £100 thousand from Newport County
United beat Liverpool and Brighton to signing the talented defender. He will most likely join up with the youth team and make his way through the youth system.
Striker, 19 years old, French, £36 million from A.S. Monaco
He’ll need to be given time by the fans as he’s very young. At the same time, he’ll need confidence from his manager. In a perfect world, United’s next game, against Liverpool, would see Martial line up alongside Rooney, and that would stay the same for the rest of the season as it would not only improve the youngster, but would also put Rooney in his best position. If left on the bench, or played on his own as a replacement to Rooney, he may be a waste of money and sensational talent.
Centre Back, 27 years old, Northern Irish, £5.81 million to West Bromwich Albion
Was he ever really good enough to play for Manchester United? It’s debateable, but he’s certainly not good enough anymore. Good sale to free up some of the wage budget.
Left Back, 21 years old, English, £980 thousand to Wigan Athletic
Looked quite good in last years pre-season, but probably wouldn’t be able to make the first team. Now he can go on and continue his career at club where he’ll play regular first team football.
Right Back, 19 years old, Swiss, £196 thousand to Celtic
He actually played really well in the infamous MK Dons defeat last season, and looked like a good footballer. I was looking forward to seeing him try and break into the first team, the disappointed when I saw how cheaply he was sold to Celtic.
Rafael Da Silva
Right Back, 25 years old, Brazilian, £2.1 million to Olympique Lyon
Tried to fill the void left by Gary Neville but his lack of strength and erratic tackling made him second choice to reformed winger Antonio Valencia. But Lyon got an absolute steal for £2.1 million, he was worth more than triple that value at the time of the sale.
Central Midfielder, 25 years old, English, Free Transfer to Everton
Since the 2011 Community Shield match, where at 2-0 down he came on and changed the game for United, leading them to a 3-2 victory, he hasn’t been able to keep a spot in the first team. He’s well suited to the Premier League but not for a club like Manchester United.
Goalkeeper, 31 years old, Danish, Free Transfer to West Bromwich Albion
Signed as a backup keeper, never really achieved much as a Red Devil, now has a slight chance to compete for a first team place at the Hawthorns.
Striker, 21 years old, Chilean, £1.17 million to Dinamo Zagreb
He was never really given a chance at Manchester United, despite being highly tipped by Sir Alex Ferguson. Hopefully that won’t come back to haunt the Old Trafford faithful.
Right Winger, 28 years old, Portuguese, £4.2 million to Fenerbahce
Another steal from Manchester United, he was valued at more than double his eventual sale price. He had a few very good seasons at United, but wants first team football, which he’d no longer get at Old Trafford.
Striker, 27 years old, Mexican, £8.4 million to Bayer 04 Leverkusen
He was surplus to requirements last season, but was needed to be kept as back up this year. After releasing so many strikers, his super-sub abilities would have been very useful in this campaign. Instead he was told that he can leave.
Striker, 29 years old, Colombian, End of Loan – Returned to A.S. Monaco
Many felt that he wasn’t given a fair chance last season but he didn’t look like the top striker he was before his major knee injury. But he’s almost guaranteed to score against United when they face Chelsea. It’s just the way it goes.
Robin van Persie
Striker, 31 years old, Dutch, £4.62 million to Fenerbahce
Another good player who went for well under his value. For that price United may as well have just kept him as he hasn’t forgotten how to score. He came to Old Trafford in search for trophies. Helped the Red Devils win their 20th league title. Then Sir Alex retired and the clown that is David Moyes replaced him; it seems as though RvP had parted ways with the club since that terrible season, despite his national coach coming in.
Ángel Di María
Left Winger, 27 years old, Argentinean, £44.1 million to Paris Saint-Germain
The British transfer record, sold the next season for a £15.6 million loss. What a disaster. He looked like a superstar deserving of the price tag at the start of the season, but after an injury, being played out of his favoured position, and having falling outs with van Gaal, he ended his United career on a low, despite getting 3rd top assists in the Premier League. It was a shame to see such a fantastic player leave, especially at such a reduced price.
Tyler Blackett, who’s a left back but can also play at centre back, has taken the opportunity to play at Scottish champions Celtic. It’s a great move for the youngster as experience is crucial to a defenders development.
Adnan Januzaj is finally being given the loan move that he should have been on before being pre-emptively forced into the first team, by David Moyes, to try and distract fans from the transfer market failures. Now he should get regular first team football and improve the physical side of his game. The Belgian will be helping Borussia Dortmund recover from a catastrophic season.
Will Keane, Ben Pearson and Joe Rothwell have all been loaned out to Championship sides; with Keane going to Preston and the other two heading to Barnsley. All 3 play in the U21’s. Pearson in particular is predicted to become a very sound midfielder.
David De Gea
Goalkeeper, 24 years old, Spanish, Valued at £21 million
The De Gea deal, taking him to Los Blancos looked a sure thing all summer. Then when the deal was finally said to be completed, on the Spanish Transfer Dealine day, it occurred that Real Madrid didn’t get the paper work in on time.
The next day, English Transfer Deadline Day, Real Madrid made an announcement claiming that it was Manchester United’s fault that the De Gea transfer failed. After the Red Devils revealed a timeline of the facts relating to the attempted transfer, Madrid admitted to failure.
Hopefully David De Gea now realises that Madrid were never that serious about signing him, which will make him question if his future is in Spain. He should now sign a new contract with United, so that even if he does still want to go, the club that raised him, developed him into a world class player and stuck with him trough his bad years, can get some money for his transfer.
But if his heart’s set on Madrid then he may put in sub-par performances and just wait the season out until he can leave on a free. However, all through this saga, the Spaniard has been a model professional.
Did the Team Improve? – Judging on the Swansea performance, no. But really, the team has vastly improved.
Were Team Needs Filled? – United have needed a right back for years, Darmian covers this. The centre of midfield has also been in question for a number of seasons, Schneiderlin and Schweinsteiger give a huge boost to the depth and versatility of United in the middle of the park.
Centre back has also been a long standing issue, but van Gaal didn’t sign any central defenders however, his faith in the likes of Smalling has come good, and the return of Rojo will be welcomed.
Rooney isn’t a striker, and cannot perform upfront on his own. Wunderkind Anthony Martial can solve this problem, if van Gaal playes him, upfront, alongside Rooney. Otherwise, United still have big striker issues.
Sell too many? – Despite the criminally low fees the players were sold for, the majority of them were necessary as they had no future at Manchester United. It was a shame to see Di María leave but if he’d fallen out with the boss then there was no point in letting such an incredible talent fester out of position or on the bench.
Van Gaal, despite signing Martial, is still short of a striker! If Rooney gets injured, as he has done in every season since 2008/09, United will only have Wilson to cover, or the new Frenchman depending on how the manager plans on using him. Keeping RvP or Hernández would have really helped the situation.
To Conclude – This can be seen as quite a successful transfer window, but it greatly depends upon how Louis plays young talent Anthony Martial, he has so much potential. Potential, of which he will not be able to reach sitting on the bench or playing in an unfavoured lone striker role.
Playing alongside the experienced and hard working Wayne Rooney would advance his development and performance leaps and bounds. Plus Rooney performs at his best when playing off of a true striker, like Martial.
I think that if van Gaal plays Martial and Rooney up top, he will see goals return to the Red Devils side, along with more team oriented play and far more fluid performances.