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The Big Summer Sale At United

United have spent nearly 50m on Owen Hargreaves, Nani and Anderson and it seems that the time has come to recoup some of the funds committed to these purchases.

Many tipped the exodus would start with defenders leaving Old Trafford but the earthquake will be in the striking department. If roumours are to be believed, Alan Smith is certain to leave United. Middlesbrough are now massive favourites to win the race for the Yorkshireman but nothing has been settled yet, according to his agent.

'There is a lot of stuff going about at the moment,' Alex Black told the Manchester Evening News.

'But nothing is going to be done until Alan comes back from his break.'

'I read various reports over the weekend that he was supposed to be going to Portsmouth, Newcastle and Sunderland as well. So we'll have to wait and see.'

Various sources claim Middlesbrough will complete the signing of Smith as soon as the striker is back from his holiday. However, Pompey, Newcastle and even Spurs are in the race for him and remember, a few days ago it was supposed to be a done deal that Smith was heading to Newcastle.

Of course, he reiterated his desire to stay at Old Trafford but similar noises of commitment has not been voiced by anyone at the United hierarchy so one must draw the sad conclusion that Smith's time is over.

Giuseppe Rossi also stressed at a number of times that he would like above all else to stay at United and prove his worth. However, while Jonny Evans is confirmed to remain at Old Trafford, Fergie's been menacingly quiet about the young Italian - and that could mean that Parma have reason to hope their 7 million offer will be accepted.

I'm against this but what if it happens? Two strikers leave, surely we'll need at least one, but preferably two. It seems that 10-15 million could be received for the pack containing Smith and Rossi - but we can't buy two quality strikers with that amount.

It is possible that United want to sell them and the funds raised will be committed to sign ONE quality striker. That's an absolutely sensible solution as far as the financial conditions and the squad depth is concerned but many of us would love to see Rossi given a chance.

For me, it's simple. With 6 million raised from the inevitable sale of Smith, United can purchase a good striker for 12 million - that wouldn't be a big burden for the budget but this solution involves keeping Rossi.

Otherwise, Richardson may also leave but we do not need to think about his replacement: currently we have five players who are all better on the left side of the midfield than him. Gerard Pique is wooed by Spanish clubs - if they offer good money, we can afford to let him go with defensive talents of Evans and Cathcart lined up.

But whatever happens, one thing is clear. The big spending of the summer is over, now we'll be economical. Sell players to buy players, that's the way forward from now this summer.

Would you sell anyone? Or even all of the aforementioned? Join in the debate on the forum and in our comments section!

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The Journalist

Writer: Zae Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Monday June 25 2007

Time: 1:00PM

Your Comments

smith too good for boro , newcastle would be a good move for him, but i fancy he will join paddys fc .
I think Popey will have a good go for him. Our local paper says that Redknapp will now look towards Alan Smith as our next signing as the Freddi Kanoute deal has fallen through. I think he would prefer to come to us than Boro. They ain't doing nothing next season except floating around 16th all season.
i think pompey would be better for him too it really looks like hes definately going
Few thoughts, United got 2m collectively from Real because of the deals with Beckham and Van Nistelrooy and their League win. So you can add that to the supposed 6m that Smith can bring in. Not sure how much Richardson could bring in, but my guess would be between 2-4m. Sell Rossi for 7m and you get a grand total of between 17-19m for a purchase. Hardly small change. What bothers me is that something doesn't add up. The 19m and 17m fee's for Nani and Anderson are largely performance related. Especially in the case of Anderson, so it's only if we win the premership or the champions league that we pay the highest price. That should mean there's a little bit of pocket change lying around somewhere. Anyone thought to themselves where that money's gone?
zaeem1701, who says that the money's gone anywhere? We bought those two for an initial fee around 12-14 million and we're looking to sign a striker but it seems that we will raise some funds from sales before that. It is unfortunately perfectly normal in the world of the Glazers and the debts.
Why not Smith to Rovers. I would love to have him at Ewood and a tad perplexed why we haven't made enquiries!
Perhaps you should suggest it to the club, roversman. I think Mark Hughes could do a deal with Fergie - somehow I feel they'd have no trouble communicating with each other :-)
Well I simply assumed that from all the press saying that we've spent our budget for the summer that we'd genuinely spent it. That's why it didn't add up. I know from various sources that this season the Kitty was about 50m-55m. So with the three signings at full price (including performance related costs) the summer dealings were about 53m. Assumming that your initial fee's are correct at worst we'd have spent 45m. That leaves between 5-10m unaccounted for. Was just wondering if that was going to be factored into the signing of another striker. I read in The Times this morning that United are looking to hijack Liverpools signing of Torres, and the only way I could account for it is the sale of various players and some money left in the kitty.
oooh who is going to sign him it's so exciting
Johnny Kipper

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