Young and cheap or glamorous? United’s big dilemma
United's financial state is a rocky ground
June 11th, 2012
Following last May’s heartbreak Manchester United have been busy in the last few weeks as the signings of Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell, and young Chilean striker Angelo Henriquez testify.
With offers for Luka Modric and Leighton Baines reportedly being lined up, it’s realistic to imagine a different looking United resuming Premier League hostilities in August.
The new signings have also confirmed what United fans have known for a while. Gone are the days when the club could compete head-to-head in the transfer window with other rich clubs from across the continent, as Hazard, Benzema, Ozil and Sneijder have confirmed in recent years.
While it might be slightly misleading to classify £50 odd millions (the sum United invested 12 months ago on DeGea, Phil Jones and Ashley Young) as peanuts the truth is that in today’s football that’s exactly what they are – to top clubs, at least.
United’s financial state is a rocky ground, one that Fergie has seemed unwilling to walk on and with a scouting system whose success is inversely proportional to the team’s record, the only way out is to buy promising youngsters (Ferguson will hope Powell will mature in the same way Smalling and Jones are doing), players of proven Premier League experience ready to make the next step (Baines could be the next) and players who have not yet reached a “star” status such as Kagawa.
While it might not be as exciting a policy as splashing cash on Europe’s top footballers every summer, it could pay off handsomely thanks to Sir Alex’s man-management.
The United manager has always stressed that nobody is bigger than the club, and that Manchester United build stars rather than buying them, and he’s been forced to stick to this credo perhaps more than he’d have wanted by the Glazers’ shameful financial decisions.
To fans crying out for big names, a couple youngsters and a Japanese playmaker might not seem glamorous enough but they won’t care one bit should United wrestle the title back from City’s grasp next season.