Once upon crisis, at the close of an underwhelming summer transfer window, the spotlight turned to Ed Woodward, the Manchester United executive vice chairman. Woodward decided, in all his wisdom, to announce that the club would recruit a Director of Football.
Once upon a time, Rant mused that the Glazers might sell. Peter Lim, Chinese investors, and even the Red Knights were said to be potential buyers should the Glazers decide to cash-in on their prize asset. Conspicuous in its absence was Saudi Arabian sovereign wealth. If there’s any group that needs positive PR right now, it is the House of Saud.
Wednesday 5 February 1958. Manchester United played Red Star in the European Cup quarter-final, drawing 3-3 in Belgrade. Bobby Charlton scored twice and Dennis Violett another as Matt Busby’s “Babes” secured passaged through to the semi-finals on a 5-4 aggregate score. They were to play AC Milan next.
Over the last few weeks much has been discussed about implications of Alexis Sanchez’ dramatic arrival at Old Trafford. The debate surrounding United’s outlay was particularly misdirected, because the focus on what the Chilean can bring to the team is far more important. However José Mourinho chooses to utilise Alexis, Manchester United has gained an élite player and will become a more of potent attacking force as a result. Of his new teammates, Sanchez’ acquisition may prove most significant for Anthony Martial.