Transfers....Transfers....Transfers...Drive a hard bargain and you might be rewarded...
Free transfers In: None.
It was early August and I had my sights set on a Defensive/Ball winning Midfielder, An Attacking Left Winger, A Centre Back and a Left Back. I felt a few of the current squad had become too complacent under the old regime; the talent did not justify the wages. I had a good idea of who I wanted in my squad for the Premier League and who was to be shown the door. Hopefully we'd find some willing takers for my unwanted players!
I spoke to Jim Lawlor my Chief Scout, together we identified our prime targets. David Gill called to remind me not to go over budget as the club were committed to servicing its long term debt and could not afford too many outlays....£30 million was not enough for what I had in mind so I got my thinking cap on and here's a summary of my transfer activities...
Free transfers Out: Weir, Grimshaw, O'Hara, Castro Pereira, Dalley, Sutherland, Harrop, McConnell, C. Evans, Rudge, Gorre.
All were youth prospects who would never get a sniff of making my match day squad let alone the first eleven! I felt it only fair to release them all on free transfers to give them a chance at finding a club in the lower leagues.
Loans In: None.
Loans Out (Free): M. Keane, Thorpe, Cole, Petrucci, Brady, Wootten, Powell, Henriquez, Januzaj, Tunnicliffe.
Loans Out (Fee): Bebe to Sunderland (1k p/w!!!), Macheda to Torino (30k p/w), Cleverley to Everton (100k p/w), Welbeck to Spurs (120k p/w).
All were youngsters with potential so on the advise of 'Choccy' McClair I arranged loans for this batch of youngsters.
I was happy with the fees I received for Welbeck and Cleverley, two rising stars in English football, but they do not figure into my plans for this season and potentially could be sold next year. Macheda will definitely be sold as soon as possible but unfortunately I don't think I can even give Bebe away! However I will try if Sunderland don't follow up on their 100k agreed fee at the end of the loan!
I was frustrated at the lack of solid bids for my unwanted stars. I wanted rid of Evra, Nani and Anderson and Ashley Young. Four stars who had no business being near my squad! There had been plenty of interest but nothing concrete. That was until Mr Wenger came calling....
Player Out: Ashley Young to Arsenal (£27 million!!!)
Players In: Marouane Fellaini from Everton (£7.5 million + p/ex Anderson), Gareth Bale from Tottenham (£0 p/ex Nani), Neven Subotic from Dortmund (£10.5 + p/ex Evra).
I nearly snapped his hand off! With this deal in place I knew I could land my targets, and maybe a few young stars of the future!!! Then a brainwave struck. I thought of a way to kill two birds with one stone...offloading three stars to get my targets...
That left plenty still in the kitty so on the advise of Lawlor and his scouting posse I went ahead and sanctioned three more deals...
Players In: Davide Santon from Newcastle (£13.5 million), Wellington Nem from Fluminense (£3.5 million), Adryan from Flamengo (£875k).
I was delighted with my transfer business, even as a rookie I felt I drove a hard bargain although the minimum release clauses attached to my two young Brazilians certainly helped! I anticipate my top three signings going straight into the starting eleven, Santon will be my starting left back. Nem and Adryan will feature now and again as very talented squad players....
New at Old Trafford Megastore for 2012/13!!!!Next time...Premier League kick off....Deadline Day drama....2 stars leave...3 arrive!
Satisfied with my transfer business I turned my attention to the start of the campaign...Soon it would be my first game in charge of Manchester United!!! My dream club, the club I have supported my entire club...The club that were now relying on ME to revive their fortunes!!! Oh crumbs!!!! I'll take some of that Beginner's luck!