This will not be a popular opinion, but the Glazers and Ed Woodward are not to blame for the lack of squad quality at Manchester United. The facts show that the Glazers have loosened the purse strings whenever they have been asked to.
Here is a comparison that will further elucidate this point. Between 1998 and the takeover, Manchester United signed six already established world renowned players – Jaap Stam, Fabien Barthez, Rio Ferdinand, Ruud Van Nistelrooy, Juan Sebastian Veron and Wayne Rooney (and the last one is debatable because he was signed more on exceptional promise). I do not count Ronaldo and others due to the same reason I state for Rooney. Either way, the spending on all players during this time stands at roughly £230million.
Since the Glazers have taken over, and for approximately the same length of time, this list is impressive – Carlos Tevez, Owen Hargreaves, Dimitar Berbatov, Juan Mata, Robin van Persie, Ander Herrera, Marouane Fellaini, Marcos Rojo and the soon-to-be-announced Angel di Maria. Add to that other big money signings such as Anderson, Nani, Luke Shaw and the total for spending is at roughly £479million. This figure is more than twice the amount for the pre-Glazer era.
Naysayers will point out the influx of money by the Ronaldo sale and inflation as the reasons for the disparity. However, when looking at sales in the pre-Glazers era, it is clear that the club was more concerned about recouping transfer fees than it is now. And the above stats show that United has signed more established players in the Glazers era than before. And inflation cannot account for the doubling of fees spent on transfers.
Having said that, I would be happy to see the back of the Glazer family. They have mired the club in debt and prostituted the name of the club. However, to say that they have been frugal in the transfer market is demonstrably wrong. The problems at Manchester United far exceed the boogieman of the Glazer family.
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