For all the flak Manchester United and Alex Ferguson have received from the media, you would have been surprised to wake up today and read that Manchester United had rejected the initial bid from Real Madrid for Ruud van Nistelrooy.
Why? Because Ferguson and United have decided, albeit a bit late in the summer, that they won’t be taken advantage of.
The move is guaranteed to send everyone watching Manchester United into a tailspin. One day we’re expecting that finally United will be able to buy a midfielder and the next, we’re scratching our heads wondering: “now what?”
Real Madrid have reportedly bid 10 or 12 million for Ruud, which is less than the 15-16 mil evaluation by Manchester United. You might even think that Ferguson would want hold out for more, but the current market is such that despite Nistelrooy’s class and pedigree, people tend to remember the last four months only and they have been pretty bad for the Dutch striker.
So now that Manchester United have shot themselves in the foot by being responsible for reducing the transfer fee for Nistelrooy, they want to hold out for more money.
At least we’re not rushing to sell our players. It’s not the best news of the summer, but it’s better than us celebrating about our ‘new’ signings (Rossi, Scholes, Solskjaer).
With Tottenham rejecting our Carrick bid and West Brom rejecting a bid for Kuszczack, United may be more than just pissed off at how clubs are trying to hold United at ransom for bit part players. Kuszczack is a good keeper but hearing Bryan Robson ask for 4 mil, a loan player and a permanent transfer makes me want to stick a lollipop in his mouth and tell him to shut up and suck it.
But that’s the distressed Manchester United fan in me speaking. Robson is a smart manager, and he’s done his bit to make sure that his players aren’t sold too cheaply. West Brom have gone too far with their demands for Kuszczack, because he is not THAT good. Ben Foster shouldn’t be sent to Watford – he should now be kept at Old Trafford and used as van der Sar’s understudy so he can learn with the best (and get his shot in the League and Cup games).
As for Carrick – well, apart from the fact that he is overpriced (14 mil for a midfielder? Rosicky came for 7, dammit) and not entirely suited to the Manchester United style of play, this is another case of a club making outrageous demands to hold on to their star player. For my money it’s a good thing that Tottenham are asking for this much as it spares us from making a mistake and investing so much in Carrick when you’ve got players much more suited to our style of play in Europe and in the EPL.
We’ll hear more about Gattuso after the appeals are heard in the match-fixing scandal and Milan know if they are playing in Europe or not. Gattuso has to be Ferguson’s top midfield target now, and the fact that he has waited so long (and not gone for Owen Hargreaves) proves that much. If Gattuso declines, Ferguson will have to look at Hargreaves and possibly Nolan, because I don’t think that Manchester United would go back to Diarra (overpriced) or move for Mascherano (not less than 15 mil).
From yesterday’s report about our debt refinancing, it is clear that we have ‘some’ money to play with, but so much that we can do a Chelsea and buy players for twice their value.