Manchester United - Fergie's Hand Is Tied In The Transfer Market
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Fergie's Hand Is Tied In The Transfer Market

Sir Alex does have money to spend in the transfer market, according to the gaffer himself - it's just that sees no player who's available and who's worth the price his club demands.

'We`ve got the money - there`s no question about that. I just don`t see that player that can make a difference to us in terms of value and availability.'

Fergie's words will be greeted with suspicion and even derision as journalists are gleefully predicting United's imminent doom because of the debts heaped on the club by the Glazers. Yet it is true that he rarely buys in January but does not refuse it on principle: when he sees a player he deems good enough, he is willing to splash the cash.

Sir Alex himself referred back to earlier January successes like Nemanja Vidic, Patrice Evra and Andy Cole - but signing Louis Saha did not save our 2003/04 season and Diego Forlan could not score a single goal in his first six months at Old Trafford so buying in January is always a gamble, it's not a recipe for instant success.

If you draw a shortlist of players who would be reasonably priced and could play in Europe as well you'll see there's precious few of them. David Villa? He's 28 and would command a ridiculous fee, as would David Silva - and Valencia would extremely reluctant to let them go now, as they are pushing for a Champions League spot which would be a massive financial boost and they could still gain additional income by selling their prized assets in the summer when CL football is secured.

Edin Dzeko? He could not play in the Champions League and Wolfsburg want to cling on to him so that they can turn their season around. Karim Benzema? Do you seriously think Madrid will cut their losses on him after only half a season? Simon Kjaer? But he does not want to think about his future until the summer and besides we'll have enough defenders once everyone recovers. Angel di Marķa? Well, according to rumours we did try on him but were put off by Benfica's excessive demands. So who could come, indeed?

Fergie's hand is tied - by the lack of options. Hopefully the market will be more reasonable during the summer, with no Cristiano Ronaldo and Kaka transfers.

Click here to join in the debate on the club forum.

The Journalist

Writer: Zae Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Friday January 8 2010

Time: 5:05PM

Your Comments (oldest first)

Change to most recent first
I really don't think you have the money. Not gloating either as we are in a similar position. That is leveraged buy outs for you.
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08/01/2010 17:19:00

Pity you didn't have enough money to hang on to Carlos.,19528,11679_5843973,00.html
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08/01/2010 17:47:00

Whether we have £1M or £100M, I cant see many players who are available and have the required quality. We have 3 strong GKs, who could only be improved upon by going and buying a GK for £20M or more and as no GK can guarantee a clean sheet there would be little point in spending that kind of money. When all of our defenders are fit, the only area we could improve would be a right back and finding a long term partner for Johnney evans. Rafael lacks experience (but not potential) and the only way to improve that situation is to let him play, not bring in someone ahead of him. We were already forced to sell Pique as not to damage his career, so with johnny evans just about getting games, bringing in another centre back before we part with Vidic or Rio is just asking for trouble. Up front, we could only hope to improve by finding a partner for Rooney who is taller, faster and a better finisher than him. Im open to suggestion, but cannot see anyone who fits that bill. When you discount strikers who play for our domestic rivals, players who have recently moved, players who are short, players whose natural position is in the hole and players who have little to no champions league or top-level league experience you are left with us having a punt on an unknown who might be decent - ok, welcome Mame Biram Diouf.
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08/01/2010 18:47:00

On the wings, we have been spoilt in recent years, so its difficult for me to be objective about the quality of wingers available at the moment. Whilst we dont have a CR7 or Messi, outside of spain, who does? Valencia and Obertan have as much ability and potential as anyone else, Giggs keeps rolling back the years (not many PL wingers have out performed him so far this year), every team needs a Park and the jury is still out on Nani. Realistically, we can only improve our wingers by selling one and bringing in a younger player with potential - and the record books show (Nani, Tosic, Babel, Walcott, SWP@chelsea) no matter how much money you spend, its not a risk that can be mitigated. In the middle of the park, we are probably the only team in the top 5 who cant really claim to have a world class, game changer. I'd love us to sign an all rounder like daniele de rossi, or someone classy like Xavi or iniesta - and if there is any body out there who could persuade those guys to leave their hometown teams whilst at their peaks to play for United write to fergie and offer him your services. But in the realms of reality, the only options we have to get a world class midfielder is to buy someone who used to be world class ie Pirlo, Vieira, Nedved and then pretend they still are. Or look to our academy and hope something turns up. Personally I have very high hopes for Pogba and Petrucci; and I still think anderson and possebon could come good. The problem is, our squad is built to play 442 which means we cant have a million central midfielders running around like the other top teams. We've paid for this in recent times because injuries have forced Carrick and Anderson to play far deeper than their natural abilities dicatate they should. However, with Hargreaves and Fletcher fit, hopefully this situation should reverse itself.So again, other than sticking with what we have we are left to punt on someone who may or may not be any good at a price which will be extortionate.
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08/01/2010 18:47:00

You're in debt up to your eyeballs basically without a way out (or a buyout) in sight. You are our poor relations, we're getting used to it, time you all did too.
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08/01/2010 20:55:00

Do you still think Hargreaves will come back and perform to his best after such a long time out? Must say, I admire your optimism, and I suspect Ferdinand's injury means he's seen his best days too. If you don't strengthen, even with squad players, you will be standing still at best. And if Vidic wants out, what then? Fergie isn't really the type to forgive what he perceives as disloyalty and will sell him even if he knows it will weaken your team. And as for your attack, what will happen if Rooney picks up a protracted injury? I'm not just gloating at you, I really do think the wheels are starting to come off, and the only way to rectify the problems with your squad is to get in some fresh blood - whether this entails spending beyond your means is another matter. Don't let your league position fool you, this is the poorest united squad in years.
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08/01/2010 21:07:00

Glazers have really messed your great club up
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09/01/2010 13:47:00

No money= POT!@
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10/01/2010 11:49:00

When have we ever spent big in Jan. Our average spending since Jan transfer window must be like £3miilion hardly breaking the bank.
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10/01/2010 15:15:00

NRD - You have never really spent big in January because you've never really needed to before. Now though...
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10/01/2010 16:50:00

NRD - Jan/Summer. It really doesn't matter now anymore does it? Where before you were quite happy to spend 30 million on one player, now you know you can't afford it; your income only exceeds your outgoings by 3 million, and it will only get worse.
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10/01/2010 20:13:00

You can't spend in the transfer window as ''YOU HAVE NO MONEY'' and the only way you will get money is if you sell your best players and that is Rooney and he may get you 30 million,(which will go the same way as the 80 million from Tranaldo, and that's not on the team) and the other's are not up to the job, and will not bring in a decent amount, Berbaflop, may get you 8-10 million, nothing more, Giggs, Scholes, freebies,as they are too old now, so the die is cast and you will/ may be looking at bargain basement player's and free transfers like Owen who will not last more than 2-3 years..... the future is bleak, and with Taggart nearing Retirement who is going to step in to his shoes?
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10/01/2010 21:55:00

I love the way you blues think spending is the answer to everything. The difference between United and the new kids on the block is that our success has always been measured in trophies and the facts speak for themselves - spending for the sake of spending has not brought long term success to anybody who has tried it. The most expensive premier league transfers include Tevez, Robinho, Berbatov, Shevchenko, Ferdinand, Veron, Essien, Drogba, Rooney, SWP and Torres (only 4 of those cost £30M+ btw). All good players, but how many have consistently produced trophies in return for their fees? I'd rather see our club trying to find the next giggs, scholes, beckham; picking up gems like ronaldo, cantona or solskjaer or wheeling and dealing in the bargain basement to pick up players like schmeichel, van der sar or larsson than get into a p!ssing contest with clubs who have loads of money, loads of big names and very few trophies to show for it.
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10/01/2010 22:40:00

Oh, you have had good teams before Tuscan, that I cannot dispute, but the key word there was 'had', as in don't anymore. The cracks are appearing and you have got to be worried about the future.
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11/01/2010 12:42:00

Yep, 'had' is the word. And you've 'had it'. Up to us to bring some glory (and trophies) to Manchester. I believe the last time was in the 70's, although that will change in a month or two.
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11/01/2010 17:45:00

If it doesn't change will you promise to wear a Stockport shirt.
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12/01/2010 13:15:00

of course its nothing to do with the money. berbaflop out , no defenders and you still dont buy anyone, you sold your best player, and ronaldo as well. so do me a favour , you aint got a pot to ***** in and since tuesday everyone now knows it. you made no friends on the way up and you are now going to meet them all on the way down.
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14/01/2010 20:05:00

Wow...Whats with all the hostility and hype about United being poor? Has everybody in this conversation got an inferiority complex? Say whatever you like to make you feel all big and mighty, whether you are a chelsea fan, a liverpool fan, or any other loser... The fact is that there is no other team that can get out of difficult situations like Manchester United. And if you think that Fergie will leave United as it is and go have a cup of tea and call it a day, you are mistaken. Although I wish that wasnt the case, and we wouldnt be talking about a buyout, just a couple of months ago, some asian guys were willing to pay 1 billion for united, if worst comes to worst, that's what will happen. Another rich bloke will come and "play" with his cash. As I said, i hoped that wouldnt be the case, but at least Fergie will be around for a few more years to take care of things. Other teams fans (especially city and pool fans) have been pondering about United's downfall many years....i've lost count....18 years or so? Keep dreaming....
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18/01/2010 12:24:00


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