Pogba to Old Trafford – Lessons United Must Learn From Past Signings

Rio Ferdinand

With Manchester United looking to shatter the world transfer record, with the imminent signing of Paul Pogba, we will examine the red devils record signings in recent times.

History shows United are not the best when it comes to splashing out huge amounts on successful signings. One of the greatest signings under Sir Alex Ferguson was Eric Cantona who was signed for £1.2 Million is a testament to that fact. The Old Trafford club have also been renowned for bringing through youth and embedding them in a successful team.

With Pogba having been on United’s books previously and leaving because of a lack of first team action, the transfer fee will certainly grate at the hierarchy within Old Trafford. However, it certainly would be a huge sign of intent from both the club and Mourinho.

These past signings, however, may instigate the club to approach with some caution.

7Luke Shaw – £27m

Luke Shaw

Luke Shaw arrived at United with undoubted talent and has grown to become a crowd favourite during his time at the club. However, both Van Gaal and now Mourinho have commented on his weight, and it is something that he will need to bear in mind if he wants to progress.

His unfortunate injury last season put the breaks on what seemed to be a fantastic start to the season, and he was forming a formidable partnership with Memphis Depay on the left side of United’s attack. It will be interesting to see if they can rekindle that partnership this season, with Depay also facing massive amounts of criticism throughout the last campaign.

Our View: Jury is still out

6Marouane Fellaini – £27.5m

The last minute arrival under the disastrous Moyes reign, Fellaini has failed to win over the United faithful and has looked a shadow of the player that bullied Premiership defences in the blue of Everton.

With Mourinho wanting specialist players in defined positions, it’s hard to see where the Belgian will fit into the new manager’s plans, and the exit door seems most likely.

Our View: FLOP

5Juan Sebastian Veron – £28.1m

Juan Sebastian Veron
Veron came to United with huge expectations. He was one of the star performers in Serie A just like Pogba is at the moment. However, it became apparent very early in his United career the English game was not suited to his style of play. His best performances in a United shirt were actually in Europe where the game was slower and allowed him to dictate play.

That was the best it got for the Argentinian, and soon he was out of the door to Chelsea where he did not find life any easier.

Our View: FLOP

4Ander Herrera – £29m

Ander Herrera
The Spaniard is a clear fan favourite, with social media always calling for his inclusion in the starting line-up. He has shown promise in many games, the Manchester derby which United won 4-2 at Old Trafford being one of his best performances in a red shirt.

Herrera likes to pass the ball forward which was not always in the plans of ex-United manager Louis Van Gaal, which may explain his extended absences from the starting XI. It remains to be seen how he will fit into Mourinho’s plans and what the arrival of Pogba will mean to his place in the pecking order.

Verdict: SEMI HIT

3Rio Ferdinand – £29.3m

Rio Ferdinand
Many labelled the signing of Rio Ferdinand as a huge gamble, paying such a huge transfer fee for a CB was unheard of. 

History shows however he was a huge success, winning 17 trophies along the way.

Verdict: HIT

2Juan Mata – £37.1m

Juan Mata in action
Juan Mata has been a bit of an enigma at Old Trafford. Some will say he has been a great success, with the number of goals he has scored and also the number that he has been involved in through assists. Others may say he has not done enough to merit the transfer fee that was paid for him; he lacks pace and overall presence on the pitch.
Despite the different viewpoints, he certainly was not been helped by Van Gaal’s restrictive tactics. It remains to be seen if Mourinho will sell him for the 2nd time, but till then United fans will keep him close to their hearts. 

Our View: HIT

1Angel Di Maria – £59.7m

Angel Di Maria

This signing was supposed to be the one that signalled United’s intent to be a leading force in European football once again. Following the disaster that was David Moyes, Van Gaal arrived with tremendous optimism. Having led the Dutch to a 3rd place finish at the World Cup, United had high hopes, and Di Maria was the man to get the fans out of their seats in excitement.

He started brightly scoring some worthy goals and assists along the way. However, after the first few months, his form dipped dramatically and never recovered. Di Maria certainly showed a lack of desire to win his place back into the team and the hearts of the fans and at the end of the season moved on to pastures new.

Our View: FLOP


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