It is difficult to hide the sense of frustration among Manchester United supporters following what was probably their worst transfer window ever.
A series of missed opportunities and mishandled negotiations, often bordering on the bizarre, left the club with just one major signing on deadline day – Marouane Fellaini from Everton.
The big Belgian is a good player but the club could have got him for £4million cheaper had they activated a release clause in his contract that expired at the end of July. That is just one example of the fuzzy, muddled up thinking that dominated United’s summer.
The pursuit of Ander Herrera and the mysterious trio of lawyers who claimed to be acting on United’s behalf on Monday only added to the surreal feel. United don’t do their business in this way and the team may suffer for it in the coming season, despite currently being among the favourites in the Unibet betting odds.
It is easy to point the finger at David Moyes and he will have to take his share of the blame for the poor summer. But you have to remember that the Scot has only just come into the job, replacing one of the greatest managers of all time and has no experience dealing with transfers at the top level.
In offering the job to Moyes the board will have known that and so should have given him the added support he needed in the transfer market to help him get off to a good start.
But by throwing Ed Woodward into the mix following the departure of David Gill it appears he and Moyes – the two key cogs in United’s transfer wheel – got caught like a rabbit trapped in headlights.
There is now the distinct possibility that the club will be forced to buy in the January window, a notoriously expensive time to shop and one that United usually refrain from entering. You can only hope Moyes and Woodward are quick learners and we don’t see a repeat of this transfer farce again anytime soon.