Why Manchester United shouldn't be surprised at a lack of selling
Background Image Via: Pixabay. CC BY 4.0.
It's common knowledge that Manchester United Football Club are probably at their worst point in about three decades. Since Sir Alex Ferguson decided to chew his last piece of gum on the sidelines, the Old Trafford faithful have painstakingly watched their beloved side fall into gradual decline.
This summer is arguably the most important ever. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been handed a talented but mentally fragile squad. Paul Pogba wants to leave, who can blame him? Alexis Sanchez is on eye-watering wages while he's been nothing but a mascot thus far. His piano playing was as good as it ever got for the Chilean since commuting up North.
Understandably, United fans have been growing in frustration in regards to an alarming lack of selling. This squad is packed with deadwood, Sanchez being the main culprit, but the answer is obvious when you think about it; what club in their right mind would want to take on bang-average players on super-high wages? Anyone with any decent business acumen would avoid these guys like the plague.
I don't mean to beat on Sanchez, but he's on £500,000-a-week. United's #7 scored two goals last season. Romelu Lukaku matched Sanchez's tally for the season within 30 minutes of the Champions League game away at Paris Saint-Germain - and even he had his struggles throughout the campaign. Yet, fans are wondering why he's still at the club? Firstly, only a handful can afford to even think about paying him close to what he currently earns. None would be actually willing to do so, and unless the Red Devils are to subsidise his wages, I fully expect the 30-year-old to see out his four-and-a-half-year deal in Manchester.
- Solskjaer wanted transfer business done by 1 July.
- Still no director of football.
- One signing from the Championship in.
- Young, Jones, Smalling, Darmian, Rojo, Sanchez, Lukaku still at the club.
The club only has themselves to blame. You look at their last three contract renewals. Phil Jones was handed a fresh, long-term deal on juicy wages for what? Sitting on the treatment table for months, then coming back to play a handful of games only to get injured again? Next up we have Chris Smalling. This one makes sense as he's probably United's best, most experienced defender, but even he is nowhere near the desired quality. Juan Mata's renewal was the icing on the cake. He has been handed a three-year contract at Old Trafford. For a man who'll be 34 when his terms expire, while offering very little in the way of production over his five-year Reds career, it only spells bad news. Gone are the days when this club used to only hand out twelve-month extensions to anyone over 30.
Is it any wonder why David de Gea is letting his contract wind down? Or Ander Herrera opted to leave on a free? The players with ambition know that this club is in decline. It doesn't even take a genius to work that out and in an attempt to stop the rot, United are willingly throwing massive contracts at bang-average players who they're going to be stuck with on the long-term. Effectively, they're making the problem worse, not better. Heck, even boyhood fan Marcus Rashford has been hesitant when it comes to signing on the dotted line. That says it all really...
United is riddled with over-expensive players on multi-year deals. They've been trying to flog Matteo Darmian for about two years, he's still here, as is Marcos Rojo - I genuinely forgot the last time he played a half-decent match for the 20-time Premier League champions. There's even talk of new deals for players like Andreas Pereira. It just seems as though this club is all-too-willing to give contracts to squad members who have a few good games in an effort to reap as much money as possible in terms of transfer value when it comes to selling them. The fact is, it's having the opposite effect.
While this club is being run into the ground by people who care more about the club's Twitter followers and pushing the latest sponsorship deal over the line, these deeprooted issues aren't going to stop anytime soon.
And I've got bad news for you United fans, as this squad is still going to be riddled with mediocre players come the start of the 2019/20 campaign as any club with a brain isn't going to touch these guys with a barge pole...