Manchester United have finished doing business in yet another transfer window. The Red Devils signed five players so far. Donny van de Beek arrived from Ajax, Alex Telles came from Porto and Edinson Cavani was a free agent. Also, two 18-year-olds were signed – Facundo Pellistri from Penarol in Uruguay and Amad Diallo will join the club in January 2021, arriving from Atalanta.
On the other hand, Chris Smalling made a transfer to Roma, Alexis Sanchez and Cameron Borthwick-Jackson left on free transfer, whilst Diogo Dalot, Andreas Pereira, Joel Pereira and Tahith Chong all moved out on loan.
Such a transfer window is simply not good enough for such a wealthy club who are in need of making important improvements to their entire squad. So what is it that makes Man United do poorly in transfer windows?
Lack Of A Clear Plan
It never feels like Manchester United have a clear plan, finding their top priorities for a few positions that need to be addressed. This time around, there was only Jadon Sancho that Man United really wanted, but even that they did terribly wrong, never really being in the race to sign the player whilst hoping things would change in the final week of the window. That was a couple of really wasted months.
But who were Man United going to sign in that position if not Sancho? Some names were hastily being linked with Man United, including Ousmane Dembele, a player who is so expensive and is rarely fit. Then came in Facundo Pellistri, out of nowhere. Man United also struggled with the position of the centre-forward and only in the end did Cavani join, when it already became obvious the club did not have anyone in particular as their first-choice in that position.
Putting Themselves In A Weak Position
Man United are constantly putting themselves in a weak position. When clubs know you need to offload a lot of players, they see that as a negative and they are not eager to have business with you. Something similar happened with Barcelona this summer. Also, constantly getting briefs to the media that the Devils will not have too much money to spend around means clubs know you are desperate to cash in on those players they are trying to sell, therefore never offering enough money, trying to put them in the corner.
Then there is also the fact that Man United have been overpaying their players for so long now that it becomes really hard to offload players like Jesse Lingard, who are on big wages.
Not Looking At The Right Places
Man United are sometimes too focused on looking at the Premier League and in recent years they are also getting a lot of players from weaker European leagues, like Ukraine (Fred) or Portugal (Dalot, Telles and others). But why not change it up a bit. Both the Bundesliga and Ligue 1 (especially the latter) offer some really interesting talents that could be undervalued. These players are not supposed to be world beaters right away and so the Devils could save some money there, whilst looking at those real targets elsewhere. This was not the problem per se in this transfer window, but looking at the few years back, some obvious transfer targets were not of interest to Man United.