• Premier League

United's spending 'amazing', says Ferguson

ESPN staff
September 5, 2014
ESPN FC assesses Manchester United's spending

Sir Alex Ferguson says he is glad he is not in charge of Manchester United's finances after the club splashed out almost £150 million in the summer transfer window.

New manager Louis van Gaal, backed by executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward, brokered monster deals for Luke Shaw, Marcos Rojo, Ander Herrera, Daley Blind, Angel Di Maria and, on deadline day, Radamel Falcao.

The £59.7m signing of Di Maria from Real Madrid was a British transfer record, something Ferguson broke himself in 2001 when he spent £28m on Juan Sebastian Veron. But the Scot made it quite clear he is happy those days are behind him.

"Certainly it's amazing, the amount of money spent nowadays," said Ferguson, talking at the annual UEFA coaches seminar.

"My personal opinion is that it's never going to change, the world is progressing, and transfer fees with it, and I don't know if there will be an end to it. Fortunately, I'm not at the hub of it nowadays.

Following United's transfer haul and the release of several players who had come through the Old Trafford ranks, such as £16m Danny Welbeck to Arsenal and Tom Cleverley's loan move to Aston Villa, Ferguson's former long-term assistant Mike Phelan suggested the club's identity was "broken".

But United remain adamant that Van Gaal, who has a record for giving youth a chance in the past, including the likes of Edgar Davids, Patrick Kluivert, Xavi, Toni Kroos and Thomas Mueller, will continue to promote from within.

The Dutch manager has seen enough from James Wilson - a two-goal star in Ryan Giggs' final game in charge as interim manager last year - to push him up to fourth-choice striker, allowing Welbeck and Real Madrid-bound Javier Hernandez to leave.

According to the Daily Mirror, senior figures at Old Trafford are upset at the perception that their huge investment means they have abandoned their commitment to you that started with the Busby Babes and continued with Fergie's Fledglings - including the Class of '92.

Along with Wilson, defenders Tyler Blackett, Michael Keane and Reece James have been promoted to the first team, as well as midfielder Jesse Lingard. Of United's 35-strong squad, 21 are younger than 25 years old, while 14 are English.

Teenager James Wilson has been promoted to the first team under Louis van Gaal © PA Photos
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