Manchester United transfer dealing, Short Termism or Long Termism?

Manchester United transfer dealing, Short Termism or Long Termism?

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Manchester United have been heavily questioned this summer over their transfer policy under the guidance of Louis Van Gaal and Ed Woodward. Man United have spent over a quarter of billion euros on new players since Louis Van Gaal took over the managerial role in June 2014. When it comes to the transfer dealings Man United have lacked experience and  the know-how when dealing with the transfers since Ed Woodward took over from David Gill.

Ed Woodward has done an amazing job on the commercial side for the club and deserves some credit, but it is his job to get the best possible deals for Manchester United,  which has he has done with the  massive sponsorship deals with Adidas and Chevrolet. Adidas will pay Man United €750m over ten years and Chevrolet will pay €350M over seven years.

When it comes to the transfer dealings, Woodward is struggling as he doesn’t appear to have the credentials for this job at the moment which can be seen with the handling of the Marouane Fellaini deal from Everton, Man United paid Everton four million more than his buyout clause and he also failed in the signing of Pedro Rodriguez from Barcelona who eventually signed for  Chelsea.  United signed Anthony Martial for €80m (this includes the bonuses) from Monaco, this led people to question Man United’s transfer dealings and if they actually have a plan in place for now and the future.

Since Sir Alex Ferguson retired, Man United has been going through a transitional period and this process will continue until Louis Van Gaal leaves in the summer of 2016 or when his contract expires in 2017.  Louis Van Gaal at the moment isn’t concerned about the success of Man United in the short term; I believe his view is more about the long term and establishing a good basis for the next Manager to take over.


Louis Van Gaal’s long-term view can be seen by the players he sold in both summer transfer windows in 2014 and 2015. During both of these transfer windows, Louis Van Gaal has sold 13 first team players over the age of 27 and other players who were simply not good enough to play for Man United, players such as Nani, Anderson, Welbeck, Cleverley, Evans and Angel Di Maria (He wanted to leave). If Louis Van Gaal kept these players they would need to be sold next year or the year after so he sold them during the past two summer transfer window’s while some of the players still had a sell on value. If Van Gaal kept the players in the squad they would eventually need to be moved on and this would hinder the next Man United manager if he kept them as they would need to sell the players so it would impact the club s they wouldn’t be able to fully concentrate on the squad available or the potential signings.


Louis Van Gaal has signed young talented players who possess a lot of potential and are capable of becoming established players at Manchester United. During both transfer windows, Man United signed eight first team squad players who are under the age of 25, players such as Memphis, Matteo Darmian, Anthony Martial, Morgan Schneiderlin Luke Shaw, Marcos Rojo and Daley blind, add these players with Chris Smalling, Phil Jones, Paddy McNair, Andreas Pereira, Jesse Lingard, Adnan Januzaj and James Wilson who are all under the age of 25 so when Louis Van Gaal  leaves, the next Manager will have a good  group of players heading into their prime or just hitting their prime which bodes well for the future of Man United.  It is vital that the future Man United manager will have an excellent basis to work from as it will help him to become successful at Man United. I believe Louis Van Gaal’s plan is to invest in the future; he is setting the ground work for the next Manager so they can take Man United out of the transition period and back challenging/winning trophies.

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Louis Van Gaal philosophy and ability to promote young talents to help them become established first team players can be seen during his time with Barcelona and Bayern Munich so his credentials makes him believe he can make something special happen with the young talented players available to his disposal, if you look at Chris Smalling and Luke Shaw for Example, they have improved immensely under Louis Van Gaal’s guidance. Even though Man United tried and failed to sign proven world class players in areas they needed besides Bastian Schweinsteiger who will replace Carrick as the experience midfielder for when Carrick leaves as Bastian is two years younger and will be available for when the next Manager arrives. The image above shows the current squad in two years which shows a lot of promise, there will be young talented players under the age of 23 and players who are just coming into their prime with a good mix of experienced players to blend the squad together perfectly, this squad will give the next Man United manager a great basis to work from.


Louis Van Gaal deserves a lot of credit for the amount of deadwood he has gotten rid of over the past two summers transfer windows, but this team will still need signings over the next few transfer windows, but in the next few transfer windows it will be easier for Van Gaal or the new Manager to sign players as they won’t need to worry about selling as many players as before so they can focus on the current squad and the potential signings to improve the squad. In my opinion, Louis Van Gaal is at Manchester United to balance the ship, keep man united in the top four in the league and to develop the ground work for the next manager to take over so the new manager can take Man United out of the transitional period and take them back amongst the world elite teams to challenge for trophies again.

Pundits, fans and professionals argue Man United don’t have a plan, it seems like Louis Van Gaal has already set in place a long-term plan at Man United, but it will not come into fruition until the next manager comes along as the ground work will already be set in place due to Louis Van Gaal. It is vital over the next couple of seasons for the young talent at Man United to get sufficient amount of game time to help them develop and grow into their roles at Manchester united so it’s important for the Man United board to pick the best manager available to take Man United back to the top and not end up with another season similar to David Moyes.