United’s identity under scrutiny – twas ever thus

Radamel Falcao

Identity. It is a topic on many lips in the wake of Manchester United’s spending spree this summer. United unloaded around £150 million on six high-class imports during the window, and yet the deal that generated most copy was Danny Welbeck’s departure to Arsenal. The end of more than 130 years of youthful tradition or the reaffirmation […]

Reds depart as Van Gaal makes squad his own

Nani

There is little surprise in supporters’ obsession with the transfer market; new faces, new names and the hope of better results to come. In Manchester United’s recent decline this fixation has become all the stronger – a collective yearning that fresh blood will cure many of Old Trafford’s ills. Certainly, United’s summer spending will revitalise […]

United’s failure is a belief in the alchemy of youth

Cristiano Ronaldo

In the cold light of Manchester United’s fateful dawn one can still feel the intoxication. Like a Saturday night drunk, stirring on Sunday morning amid the cold pizza and lager cans strewn across the wreckage once called home. Yet, United’s hangover from Cristiano Ronaldo’s wild ride still throbs, blurring clear thought and obfuscating the truth. Like […]

Rojo deal papers over another clusterf*ck of a summer

Marcos Rojo

These are celebratory times indeed. Not only has Manchester United’s executive vice chairman Ed Woodward closed a deal, some 12 days before the summer transfer window shuts, but in a position where the Reds are desperately short. United’s calamitous showing against Swansea City last weekend served only to highlight just how desperately the club requires […]

Exodus

Rio Ferdinand

Movement of the people. Or, in this case, Manchester United players. By the end of the summer up to 14 first team or fringe players could have left the club as Louis van Gaal and Ed Woodward embark on a major programme of squad restructuring. Whether the flip side of that coin, new signings, arrive […]

Woodward under pressure as Vermaelen chase ends in failure

Ed Woodward

Strange business, the transfer window. Take Manchester United’s executive vice chairman, Ed Woodward, for example. Ostensibly charged with executing the Glazer family’s commercial vision, Woodward has been roundly lambasted for his performance in the transfer market over the past year. Indeed, few executives other than in football are judged – by outside parties at least […]

Poll: which ‘world star’ should United sign?

James Rodriguez

Executive vice chairman Ed Woodward claims that Manchester United can break the world transfer record for player, with manager Louis van Gaal working under no fixed budget. Speaking during United’s tour of the USA, Woodward echoed previous sentiments about United’s financial muscle. “It is in our capabilities to spend £60m, £70m, £80m on a player […]

No limit to Reds commercial gain – now for squad renewal

Adidas Old Trafford

It is, in every sense, an extraordinary deal. Some 13 years after Manchester United first hooked up with Nike, executive vice chairman Ed Woodward has brokered a shirt manufacturing contract with adidas that is worth at least £750 million to the club by 2025. Possibly substantially more. It is a deal that underlines United’s enduring […]

Reds suffer once more for lack of market focus

Ed Woodward

Manchester United’s board, it was said, moved to fire David Moyes early so the new manager might enjoy a head start in the transfer market this summer. One wonders, with just over two weeks until the World Cup begins in Brazil, whether the club’s executives have considered the meaning of irony. Indeed, Louis van Gaal’s appointment, […]

Data Rant: how much will the Glazers release this summer?

Glazers

Helped by few suspect refereeing decisions Guus Hiddink took South Korea to the semi-finals of the 2002 World Cup. In the process the Dutch manager confused many Korean journalists by referring to his 3-5-2 system as “1-3-3-2-2″ – he often preached that a player’s position is always relative to others and that the goalkeeper is […]