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3 reasons why Manchester United refused to buy Mascherano



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If you haven’t heard by now, David Gill has said that Manchester United turned down the chance to sign Mascherano twice, and were never interested in Tevez in the first place.

And while we waiting for another ‘foaming-at-the-mouth’ article from Manchester United’s finest fans, you might want to consider that what Gill is saying actually has merit.

Gill says that:

“Tévez was never on the shopping list.

We watched Mascherano carefully and very closely. We were offered him at the start of the transfer window for a significant sum but the manager and his staff did not want to pursue that. We were also offered him last week in a loan-type deal for a year and, again, we were not interested. The experts in our club determined that we did not want to go for him.”

This is, if true, a very significant statement coming from the chairman of an EPL club. In effect, Gill is confirming what we suspected all along.

MSI (or rather, Kia Joorabchian) pimped Tevezcherano to a host of EPL clubs for a high price, looking to make a profit out of the deal. When that fell through (other teams could have rejected the players for funds or because of the presence of stars in the side), Kia went at it again with a loan deal which would apparently have had a lot of strings attached to it.

United refused both times. Basing on what we know about Arsenal’s meeting with Mascherano’s agents, we can safely say that they refused the loan deal as well.

Now this raises two questions – what the hell are MSI doing, and why did Ferguson turn down Mascherano? The first question I will answer in a future post, but as to why Mascherano was rejected, here are a few ideas – mind you, this is my opinion, you’re free to form your own – and do let me know if you think otherwise in the comments.

Why Manchester United turned down the chance to sign Mascherano

Reason #1: Mascherano was too expensive initially.

Here’s a quote from Joorabchian:

“Football is a very important business in the world and you can make success and achieve goals. A perfect aim . . . would be [for a club] to go from being worth £25m-£30m and in 15, 20 years to get sold at around £800m. You aim to make the club grow and to make the club strong for the supporters. You have to balance both aspects: the financial and the passion.”

(full article)

Joorabchian wants to make money out of his assets, and realistically speaking Mascherano would command a 15+ mil fee if a top club was to come after him. Diarra went for 17 mil – you would expect Mascherano to fetch at least that much.

Manchester United spent 14 mil (rising to 18) on Carrick, and that has caused a lot of people to complain – but there is a possibility that Mascherano was being offered for more than 20 mil, or that Kia wanted United to enter a auction for the player along with other top clubs.

Reason #2: Manchester United don’t rate Mascherano highly / he doesn’t fit in with their plans.

That might be very surprising for some people, but hey, I watched the World Cup as well and for my money Owen Hargreaves is just as good a ball-winner as Mascherano and equally good at distributing the ball to forward players. It is quite likely that Ferguson wanted a player who would fit in quickly with the squad’s style of play – especially considering how highly Manchester United have emphasized the ‘team effort’ in their 3 wins this season.

Mascherano is unproven in a European league and would have had the same problems as other players coming directly from South America in settling in England. In comparison, Hargreaves would have had no such problems at all.

Reason #3: The conditions attached to the deals were not acceptable to Manchester United.

Assuming that Manchester United turned down buying Mascherano for a combination of the above two reasons, the only reason left for the club to refuse a loan-deal would be the conditions attached to the loan – rumours of ‘sell-on’ clauses and what not have littered the newspapers since the deal went through, and it wouldn’t surprise me if United scoffed at the “opportunity” to help Kia Joorabchian a massive profit on their expense.

And as far as Tevez is concerned, why would you pay 20-25 mil for a striker when you have a similar player in Rooney?

Ok, I have argued that Tevez should be bought, and I still think that both Tevez and Rooney playing together would be excellent, but a far better combination would be Rooney and Henry (saying this to show the difference) – mainly because Henry is a different sort of player and Rooney would thrive in that sort of a striker relationship.

Saha offers Ferguson and United that option. Tevez wouldn’t have, and Nistelrooy did not either. You can’t buy every great player (unless you’re funded by a billionaire) and stuff them in your team, you need to find the right balance.

One last thing (and I’m saying this because it really annoys me when people I respect do this) – why is UnitedRant complaining like a little girl? This has gotten worse through the summer – I know that when we don’t bring in the players we need that is a loss for the club but do you have to be such a brat and complain about the past when it is bleeding obvious that Ferguson does not want to make the same mistakes?

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Ahmed Bilal created Sportslens in 2006. He is a business consultant and entrepreneur who helps businesses identify and overcome their biggest challenges. He’s also the founder of Football Media, an online advertising agency that specialises in sports and male audience targeting, with a monthly reach of 100m+ sports fans in the UK and US. He’s also the previous owner of Soccerlens.com – a sports news site that reaches 3m+ readers / month.