Manchester United have been involved in two of the biggest deals in football history. While they signed Paul Pogba this season for a whopping £89 million, they also sold Cristiano Ronaldo to Real Madrid a few years ago.
While Pogba has not been able to star for his side this season, United do have a history of paying big to get the best players at the club. There are, however, a number of signings the club have made have been on the cheap.
Everyone loves a great bargain and here are five of the best bargain signings that the Old Trafford club has pulled off.
Nemanja Vidic: €10.5 million
The first man on the list is one of the best defenders in the modern era of the Premier League. Nemanja Vidic was brought to the club by Sir Alex Ferguson and the Serb was an instant success. Vidic formed a great partnership with Rio Ferdinand as United won the league five times with the Serb in the side.
Not only was he quick off the ball, he was a monster when it came to tackling and defending. Vidic also picked up a Champions League title in 2008 and certainly was one of the best bargain buys in the history of the Premier League.
He was even voted Premier League player of the year twice!
Edwin van der Sar: €4 million
The Dutch goalkeeper was a bit of a surprise signing, seeing that he came from Fulham. Many had thought that this decision to sign the now 45-year-old would not payoff but how wrong they were.
The former Juventus goalie signed in 2005 and picked up four Premier League titles and a UEFA Champions League title as well.
Van der Sar wasn’t a bulky goalkeeper but was thin and lanky. His height was his greatest advantage and he was great in picking up balls from crosses. The Dutchman was also a leader at the back and is still considered as one of the complete keepers in the history of the game.
Roy Keane: €8.5 million
The Irish footballer is still considered as one of the toughest men to have ever played the game. Though Keane would be remembered for his rather unsavoury off-field incidents, there is no denying that he made the defensive midfielder’s role his own at Manchester United for years.
The former Nottingham Forest man came to Old Trafford in 1993 and immediately set his mark. He won almost everything there was to win in club football but he did not have the best of times with Sir Alex Ferguson and of course how can we forget those fights with Patrick Vieira and Arsenal?
Keane did try his hand out at manager at both club level and international level but his seven Premier League titles speak about the value he brought to the club and more importantly to the midfield of Manchester United.
Eric Cantona: €1.8 million
The fee paid by Manchester United to Leeds United in 1992 might seem to be nothing but it certainly was a big deal back then. The Frenchman was probably one of the best players to have ever played the game and turned things around for a Manchester United side that had no real attacking threat at that time.
The Frenchman won four Premier League titles with Manchester United and a couple of FA Cups as well. He was instrumental in the one season he spent at Leeds and even helped them to the old First division title. Certainly, not a bad bit of business by Manchester United but a million pounds back then was a lot of money!
Peter Schmeichel: €750,000
This name had to be on the list, especially when Sir Alex Ferguson decides to call it the “Bargain of the century”.
Not many knew about the talented goalkeeper back then when he moved from Brondby. The Dane was exceptional for United over the years, probably the best goalkeeper to have played for United, at least in the Premier League era.
Schmeichel won five Premier League titles with Manchester United. He also picked up three FA Cups and a Champions League medal during his eight-year stay with the club. The Dane might have moved to bitter rivals Manchester City in the latter stage of his career but no one can grudge him that.
One remarkable stat, he has never lost a Manchester derby! While playing for United or for City!
Please note: All values are taken from Transfermarkt