It’s no surprise that in every transfer window United are linked with top world-class players, however just a few of these stars have been transferred in Old Trafford for the past few years. For most of the fans this situation has become irritating as every day, transfer market period or not, the media invents rumours based on reports from local papers that have zero credibility in what they write, or sometimes even misinterpret what that paper was trying to state in the first place. Yet, this isn’t the worst of all this; sometimes, it’s the players and their agents that create stories in the media by doing an interview or just posting something in the social media, just to get a better deal with their current club. We created a list of these players that reportedly were so close United in the past two years. Let’s have a look who made it:
The first rumour in the list dates in 2015 where Manchester United were heavily linked with Barcelona’s star Neymar Jr. and according to the media, a deal could possibly happen with Neymar not being happy at the Catalan club, since they weren’t fond of giving him a new contract, with an improved wages, of course. The player wasn’t happy with this and the best way to get what he wanted was to create transfer rumours that would involve Europe giants, prestigious clubs, teams that could afford his possible transfer. United, definitely met all requirements and this chance couldn’t be missed from the Brazilian and his father, who is the Brazilian’s agent as well. It was one of the Catalan based newspapers El Mundo Deportivo that created the news at first, stating that the player’s situation was being followed by Manchester United, that wanted to land him as soon as possible in The Theatre of Dreams. However the player remained a Barcelona player in that summer, but this didn’t stop reports coming from Spain and England that United hadn’t given up on the player and they would try again in the following summer. This summer saga was surely calmer than the Pogba saga, but was still creating news. Around June 2016, as the Express reported, the club had sent a club official to Brazil to broker stunning Neymar deal. There were even salary details involved with both PSG and United offering him a lot of money, which would satisfy him and his father. Barcelona, were the ones that fell for it in the end, as the Catalans were ready to accomplish all his wishes just to keep him. What was left for Manchester United and the fans were just poor rumours that had one simple purpose, to get a better contract. Those United fans that wanted to see him in a red shirt were disappointed as the player was only using the club to get a better deal.
This isn’t the only case where this happened and this time even a player’s mother was involved. A cold war started between Sergio Ramos and Real Madrid in summer 2015, with the player clearly showing his desire to stay but not accepting the same salary. This was even more delicate than the Neymar case since the player was named club captain after the departure of Iker Casillas. Taking advantage of United’s defensive problems, the club was once again was used to get a better deal, from a player. After all this ended with the Spanish signing a new deal for Real Madrid, he even had the courage to state that he actually had considered an offer made by United:
“There was a firm offer, on paper. For a moment I thought about a change of scene, but Real Madrid was always my priority. I felt disappointed, but not due to economic problems like people said.”
It’s understandable that Madrid was like his home but the way things went last summer, questions were asked about his loyalty towards Real Madrid, the team that gave him the captain’s armband. This surely brought a lot of controversy among United fans because a solution was needed in the heart of the defence but knowing Ramos’ history with red cards, his age, this didn’t hurt as much as the Neymar deal.
There’s no surprise that in the list we will involve former United player and star Cristiano Ronaldo. I have heard many United fans dream about his possible comeback at United. Anyway, the Reds never forget that these rumours would start every time Cristiano was unhappy about something, like a critic from a club legend, Messi signing a better deal than him or even at times just to attract the media’s attention. Clearly, Ronaldo playing the guilt card would always get what he wanted, becoming the world’s best paid footballer.
What’s most irritating is that the media knows where to create news, where it mostly hurts to United supporters. With Valencia and Darmian both not convincing Mourinho in the start of the summer, the club was looking for a decent right back and we were immediately linked to AS Monaco’s Fabinho. A lot was said about the Brazilian that seemed closer than ever to United, yet nothing happened and he remained a Monaco player. What makes the story even more interesting is that in the end of the summer, after the transfer market was closed, he was offered a new deal by Monaco and he was expressed happy with this. Another transfer blow for United as they didn’t manage to seal the Brazilian prospect; however the player did use his connections really well and managed to get a new contract for himself.
The last one added in the list is Francisco Alarcon, the Spanish International that has ultimately found his way back in Zinedine Zidane’s Starting XI. Reports from the Sun stated that the player is refusing to sign a new contract for Real Madrid, since he is concerned about the minutes he will play and also about his wages. Having renewed with several stars, Real Madrid is focused now on him, but the player needs guarantees that the royal club cannot give. Manchester United and Tottenham are observing his situation but there isn’t much hope since he hasn’t expressed his wish to play somewhere out of Spain and considering all the above examples given, he is just using United to get what he desires. He is nearly achieving that, as the Spaniard according to Cadena SER has said to his father to stay quiet about the situation. The Spanish media say that this isn’t a question of money but all he wants to know is whether he will have those minutes he is asking for. It could be this, but United fans are fed up with these news that end up being false and are just another case of using the name of Manchester United to impose and threaten their current club of a possible departure that isn’t likely to happen at all. Would a player like Isco be a great addition to the team? He is a talented player that can have a huge impact in the game. He really would add quality to our side, but as stated above there’s no case of discussing it, since all this is being done to get a better deal with Real Madrid. For years, he has been linked to us or even other teams in England but has always said no, because he simply wants to stay there. This definitely closes another case where United have been used from a player to get a better deal for himself. That surely leaves a bad taste in all this but some transfers aren’t meant to happen but with the players using us to get what they want, this surely isn’t pleasant for any Manchester United supporter.
Our relationship with the media went from bad to worse when Jose Mourinho was appointed United manager and I assume that we will see plenty of these stories in the upcoming months. Anyway, Mourinho showed how work is done around as back in the summer he stated that United had four targets and that was accomplished by Ed Woodward. Let the media do the talking, be selective and these type of stories won’t annoy you any longer, because if it were to believe everything they say, Gareth Bale would have been a Manchester player before even joining Spurs. It seems that we aren’t getting a way out of this rumour as the media keeps linking him with us in every single transfer market.