Analysis of Manchester United's transfer business under Louis van Gaal
Sir Alex Ferguson’s and David Gill’s partnership in the transfer market reflect a conservative approach towards each player that signed up for Manchester United and combined with the Glazer family’s inconsistent financial givings, transfer season would pass without much aplomb. During his 27 years at United, the legendary manager signed 102 different players but never had the freedom to lavishly spend on acquisitions of players of his choice in his time at Old Trafford.
Louis Van Gaal’s tenure at United reveals a contrasting picture. The Dutchman has spent a total of 293.85 million euros since his arrival at the Theatre of Dreams , and shows no signs of stopping. Rather, he seems determined to get the players that he wants in his team in a bid to revive the winning spirit at the club after two consecutive trophyless seasons.
David Moyes took charge at United soon after Sir Alex’s retirement. What followed was Manchester United’s worst season in the Premier League since in its inception. Although he bought Marouane Fellaini from his former club Everton and Juan Mata from Chelsea, he was unable to reach the standards set by Alex Ferguson.
Bereft of Champions League football, and no silverware to show, Moyes was sacked and left behind an unstructured and a disoriented dressing room, with several players looking for a switch to other big clubs in order to feature in Europe’s elite competition.
Louis Van Gaal came with a reputation and his immediate target was to get the Red Devils back into the Champions League and possibly challenge for the title. The latter was not to be accomplished but he has fulfilled the club’s ambitions of participating in the Champions League if they are to win the qualifiers. But at what cost?
Manchester United have been named the most valuable sports team in England. They have a total valuation of $3.1 billion and rivals Manchester City also feature on the list of top 50 along with Chelsea and Arsenal. It could indicate that the Dutch coach has money to burn and will go all out to make Manchester United title contenders again.
Van Gaal spent close to £150million in his first season in charge, buying the likes of Angel Di Maria, Ander Herrera, Daley Blind, Marcos Rojo and Falcao(on loan) and it is expected that he will be given a free hand to utilise the funds at his disposal to buy players of his choice to strengthen the squad in a bid to bring the lost glory back to Old Trafford.
So far in this transfer window, the Dutch manager has spent close to €100 million acquiring the signature of German captain Bastian Schweinsteiger, Morgan Schneiderlin from Southampton, Memphis Depay and Matteo Darmian.
He has allowed big-names like Robin van Persie and Nani to leave Old Trafford this summer. It remains to be seen how the manager fares this season in Premier League and Champions League with all the cash he has spent so far.
The total net spend under Van Gaal’s tenure adds up to €233 million.
|Arrivals||Fee (in million €)||Departures||Fee (in million €)|
|Morgan Schneiderlin||35||Robin Van Persie||6.6|
|Bastian Schweinsteiger||18||Angelo Henriques||1.67|
|Matteo Darmian||18||Tom Cleverly||0|
|Angel Di Maria||75||Tom Thorpe||0|
|Luke Shaw||37.5||Ben Amos||0|
|Ander Herrera||36||Danny Welbeck||20|
|Marcos Rojo||20||Shinji Kagawa||8|
|Daley Blind||17.5||Alexander Buttner||5.5|
|Rademel Falcao||7.6m (Loan Fee)||Wilfried Zaha||3.83|
|Javier Hernandez||2.5 (Loan Fee)|
All figures were gathered from transfermarkt.com