Manchester United needs to rethink their negotiation tactics on contract extensions

Ander Herrera’s potential exit from Manchester Unitedhas raised questions to the tactics used by the club when it comes to extending the contracts of current players. Herrera Is out of contract in the summer, and according to the rumours has agreed to a move in the summer to Paris Saint-Germain.

The controversy has surrounded the fact that with the Spanish midfielder being so close to the end of his contract, he hasn’t even been offered a new one by United, and how has the potential to leave without any transfer fee paid by PSG.

This isn’t the first occurrence of this happening to players who would seemingly be obvious choices to secure with contract extensions. David De Gea is also down to the bone of his contract, with the club only having one season left on his contract after activating the option to keep the goalkeeper one more year.

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De Gea has also been a victim to this game before, as it took some time for his last contract to come to fruition back in 2015, and was on the last season of his previous contract at the time of the extension. Anthony Martial also had to put up with a bit of a wait of receiving a contract offer recently, as his previous contract was due to expire at the end of next season.

While United have been seemingly more efficient on Martial’s contract than those of De Gea and Herrera, the leverage was still getting close to being on Martial’s side, as it seems a player has a better chance of getting better wages if the club can obtain them on a free transfer. 

Mix this with the fact that Alexis Sanchez is making around £350,000 a week. This type of strategy is the worst possible one when it comes to putting the players in the leveraging positions, and causing the club to have to pay out a lot more than players would probably be worth realistically.

Players such as Herrera and De Gea would be statistically justified in requesting a salary that is similar to the pay scale that Sanchez is on, and because of this, they are now being wooed with interesting offers from other clubs, that are on that scale. 

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If United want to keep their player’s long term, they will have to end the procrastination when it comes to offering contract extensions to their players. With players being allowed to negotiate pre-contract agreements, players can gain a lot of leverage towards the last year of a contract. 

With United already potentially offloading a few of the ageing and underperforming players this summer, the last thing that the club needs is to lose players that are important to the club, and play a big role within the squad, especially in Herrera’s case, who was a trending potential favourite for the clubs captaincy.

Players like that are the last ones that should be leaving the club, and if Herrera does end up leaving, the calls for changes to the business side of United will only get louder, and the only thing that may fix that mistake in the eyes of fans would probably be a Director of Football being appointed to the club.

Written by Joel Dulka

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