This is by far our most exciting transfer window for 3 seasons, we’re only a couple of weeks in and we’ve already got one deal wrapped up with two to follow. However the real question is, should we have prioritised our limited transfer budget on positions for which players are more urgently needed.
De Gea – £17.5million
A goalkeeper was obviously one of the positions we urgently needed to buy for and as an avid follower of Atletico Madrid I can tell you this is money well spent.
Atletico have possibly one of the worst back four in La Liga, without him they would have finished a lot lower. But not only that, he can kick!
This is possibly one of the most important qualities of a modern keeper, he will play the ball short, always be available for the pass, like having a third central defender while we’re in possession of the ball.
This is where Ben Foster and Kuszczak failed most, they were both decent keepers, but unless a keeper in modern football can use his feet, he will not be composed, and that then makes the defence less composed as witnessed against Blackburn away this year.
Jones – £16.5million
Jones has potential to be a quality defender and if we didn’t need strengthening in other areas he would be a great purchase for the future.
But the fact of the matter is, we have Ferdinand and Vidic as our first choice back four, and when Ferdinand eventually gets injured we have Smalling to cover who looked very impressive last season.
But then, what happens if one of them gets injured, and Jones can be cover for midfield especially when we need a strong defensive element in the midfield which often is essential in big games. As much as I think was buying Jones really necessary?
I actually believe it was, so long as both he and Smalling reach their full potential then our central defence sorted for the next 10 years. But of course let’s not forget the main reason we bought him… we bought him to save his soul from the damned Scousers!
I believe this was money well spent, we can’t lose out on one of the most promising youngsters in English football, especially to them.
Young – £16million
Well, Ashley Young, what can I say, you are the Villa player I hate most, you are one of the worst divers and cheats in the league and not even a successful one like Drogba and Ronaldo.
But, do I think we should have bought him? Yes.
He is a left winger, Nani and Valencia can’t play on the left, both have had great form this season while playing on the right, but the second we tried to play Nani on the left, his form dipped.
I do not believe Ashley Young is good enough for United; however I do believe he deserves a chance to prove himself, and I would love him to prove me wrong and so I will support him as well as any other Manchester United player, but I will always have my doubts.
So, as for the money spent, I think we could have got him cheaper, he has 1 year left on his contract, this usually means good players go on the cheap and realistically he should be worth no more than £10mill otherwise Villa risk letting him go for nothing next season.
So overall, have we overspent, probably yes, we’ve paid two high fees for a 19 and a 20 year old and a high one for a player with 1 year left on his contract. But regardless of that we have made 3 great signings (okay, two and a half) and it is a good start to the window.
However, our most urgent position to be addressed is central midfield. With Sneijder and Modric both on Fergie’s radar we may need every penny we can get to try and get their clubs to sell them,
Sneijder is Inter’s best player and Levy has a history of overcharging us for Spurs players so we may have to be prepared to break the bank.
There is also Nasri, he may just be playing agent games to try and get a bigger contract, but if he really is considering leaving Arsenal then he is a player we should seriously consider, he is young, he will be cheap, and he is French!
People doubt whether he has what it takes to play in central midfield, but his best spell this season came while Fabregas was injured where he came to the fore of Arsenal’s team and orchestrated the game around him.
In other words, being the major playmaker and making late runs into the box getting 10+ goals a season from central midfield, something we have been missing since Scholes was deployed in a deeper role.
Our transfer shopping is virtually complete already, all we need to do is add one of these three players or a suitable alternative and this transfer window can be seen as one of our most successful for a while.
However failure to buy a centre midfielder will result in us falling short in the same position next season and we will continue to do so until we buy someone of world class quality.
If it is the case that we could not afford whichever player Fergie chooses to go for then I would say yes we have wasted money, but if we manage to get our target, then money well spent!
By Luke Joseph – @LukeJoseph1