United ‘ready to break transfer records’

Premier League title holders City still looking for new signings.

Agencies July 24, 2014

LONDON: Manchester United are prepared to break transfer records in order to give new manager Louis van Gaal the players he wants, according to executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward.

The English giants have already spent over £50 million on England left-back Luke Shaw and Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera, and Woodward says that they are ready to spend even more.

Some of United’s European rivals have spent big recently. Real Madrid on Tuesday signed James Rodriguez from Monaco for a fee of around £63 million, while Barcelona paid Liverpool around £75 million for Luis Suarez.

Asked if United were able to pay a similar amount for a player, Woodward said, “It is in our capabilities. The club is not afraid of doing that — spending significant amounts of money in the transfer market.”

United are rebuilding under Van Gaal after a dismal 2013-14 season and Woodward says that in the context, the club will have no qualms about sanctioning big-money signings.

“Whether it’s a record or not doesn’t really resonate with us,” he added, in comments reported by the British media on Wednesday.

“What resonates is a top elite player that the manager wants that is going to be a star for United. We are in a very strong financial position. We can make big signings.”

Squad not complete yet: Pellegrini

English champions Manchester City are still in the market for new signings to boost their title defence, said manager Manuel Pellegrini on Tuesday.

Pellegrini has already brought in Brazilian midfielder Fernando from Porto, French fullback Bacary Sagna from Arsenal and goalkeeper Willy Caballero from former club Malaga but isn’t convinced his impressive pool is enough.

“I don’t think the squad is complete yet but we have six weeks before the transfer window closes,” the Chilean told reporters.

“Perhaps there is the option to bring one or more players in or maybe one or two will leave our squad but there is time for us to consider what is best for our team.”

Pellegrini’s purchasing plans may have been changed after striker Alvaro Negredo suffered a broken foot in the friendly win over Scottish side Hearts on Friday.

“Negredo had surgery today [Tuesday] on his broken foot and he will be out for three months. It is a blow for us because he is a very important member of our squad so obviously we will miss him.”

Published in The Express Tribune, July 24th, 2014.

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