Manchester United have announced the signing of Brazilian left-back Alex Telles on a four-year contract with the option of a fifth year. It is reported that United will pay FC Porto €15 million (£13.6 million) and €3 million (£2.7 million) in add-ons as part of the deal to sign the 27-year-old, who was in the final year of his contract at the club. Telles had been linked to the Old Trafford club for a number of weeks with it being reported just over a fortnight ago that the Brazilian had agreed on a five-year contract at the club but it was soon downplayed by journalists as not being quote correct. After a period of waiting, everything has now been completed.
Last season at Porto, Telles made a total of 49 appearances, scoring 13 goals and 12 assists in all competitions, scoring two goals and two assists in three appearances this season. Luke Shaw has scored just two goals adding 11 assists in his time at the club. Telles started his career at Juventude and soon signed for Grêmio, where he made 39 appearances, scoring one goal and four assists. He also played for Galatasaray, make 60 appearances, scoring two goals and four assists being loaned out to Inter Milan for one season, making 22 appearances, getting one assist. In total, at Porto, Telles made 195 appearances, scoring 26 goals and 57 assists.
Speaking to the official Manchester United website about his move to the Old Trafford club, Telles said:
“To join a club with the prestige of Manchester United is a huge honour. You have to work hard to get to this moment your career and now I am coming to this club, I can promise that I will give everything in my heart to be a success here.
“I won many trophies at FC Porto and I want to continue that at United. The manager has a clear plan and direction for this team and I can’t wait to pull on the famous shirt.”
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will be pleased to get another signing across the line this summer, despite United leaving it late to get deals done, which in understandable considering the hierarchy of the club and the fact they are always slow at concluding deals. United will not play again until the 17 October when they are scheduled to face Newcastle United at St James’ Park in the Premier League in a match that is scheduled to kick off at 15:00 BST, but will be subject to change. After United’s 6-1 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at Old Trafford on Sunday, the manager will be seeking United to show everyone that they are made of, coming back from this defeat.
Speaking to the official Manchester United website about the signing of Telles, Solskjaer said:
“First and foremost I welcome Alex to [Telles] United. He is a player we have been tracking for some time and his performances over the past few years are exactly what we are looking for.
“He is a fighter and a winner and will add real determination and competition to the squad. Alex has the qualities, both as a player and a person, that we want here at Manchester United.”
United will have more depth in the fullback position now with both Telles and Shaw likely to go head to head for the starting left-back place and Brandon Williams, who can play at both right-back and left-back, likely to contend with Aaron Wan-Bissaka, perhaps Ethan Laird and maybe Tim Fosu-Mensah for a position at the club. With the number of matches United will be playing this season, it is likely that many of the players will get important minutes on the pitch but Shaw could be the main casualty with Telles now signing for the club. For many years now, Shaw has not lived to the expectations and his injury record and form has been poor.
Written by John Walker