How Manchester United Have Changed Their Transfer Recruitment Strategy

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The 2024 summer transfer window officially opened on July 1, and within 10 days, English giants Manchester United have made sizable progress. After finishing 8th in the English Premier League last season, with a record-low tally of 60 points, Manchester United were expected to make several large-scale changes to their squad. But as is the case with most transfer windows for the Red Devils, business doesn’t usually start until August. But there seems to be a change this time around.

The 2024 summer window marks a new beginning for Manchester United, as it is the start of the Sir Jim Ratcliffe administration at Old Trafford. And by the looks of it, the new regime has set the ball rolling early. As of July 9, United seem to be in pole position to sign 4 players already.

The first bit of business that sources have confirmed is that of Dutch defender Matthijs De Ligt from Bayern Munchen. According to British media outlets, United have already agreed personal terms with the Dutchman and have been quoted a £42 million fee which they are willing to match. Additionally, Bologna’s Dutch striker Joshua Zirkzee is also close to signing with United. The 23-year-old striker has reportedly agreed personal terms with United and could join the club on a €40 million deal.

After losing Raphael Varane on a free transfer, United are scouting the market for defensive reinforcements. With De Ligt very close to joining, United have also been looking at long-time target Jarrad Branthwaite, who had a terrific season with Everton last year. It has been reported by British sources that United had a £45 million bid rejected very recently and have now moved their attention towards another star defender.

18-year-old Lille defender Leny Yoro has been on Real Madrid’s shortlist since the end of last season. But with the Branthwaite deal dragging on, United have reportedly gone proactive and have had a £42 million bid accepted for Yoro. Although personal terms haven’t been agreed on, it does seem that United could pull off a big scoop if the young defender agrees to join the side, having been waiting for Real Madrid. 

United’s early romp in the summer window can be attributed to the arrival of new owners. But the incomings of sporting directors Dan Ashworth and Christopher Vivell are proving to be the real spark plugs in United’s transfer policy. All the signings that are in the process are of the right age profile, playstyles, and most importantly- the price tags. United have been infamous for paying well over the odds for players that don’t suit the system. However, the new structure and recruitment system in place do seem to have had a major impact.

If United are to complete the signings of the aforementioned players this summer, then manager Erik Ten Hag can head into the 24-25 season with a more than competitive squad.

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