When Jose Mourinho was appointed the manager of Manchester United, he had some players (four to be precise) on his transfer list. What did United do? They just went all out to sign those players. Eric Bailly, Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic joined the club. After lots of transfer windows, United finally had a constructive, precise and really good window. And, finally, Ed Woodward got the marquee name he was looking for: Paul Pogba for a world record fee. So the 2016 summer transfer window made a big change at United and marked the start of the Jose era.
‘What change?’ I hear you ask.Well, a change in transfer policy. Under David Moyes, United kept on enquiring about big names and kept on making big offers, but failed to secure the signings. David Moyes is not the most attractive manager for a player and so clubs and players alike rejected offers. Finally United ended up with Marouane Fellaini. Under Louis Van Gaal, United didn’t have much of a transfer policy. All they did was sign players past their prime or players who weren’t quite the global superstars that United and Ed Woodward wanted. Angel Di Maria did sign, but Van Gaal’s restrictive style of play didn’t suit him. So off he went to PSG.
Van Gaal suddenly had an interest in a player and then he tried to go after them. He didn’t have a clear transfer strategy. Morgan Schneiderlin, Bastian Schweinsteiger and Memphis Depay, all signings who came with huge expectations but hardly delivered.
But as soon as Jose Mourinho came in, he knew what he wanted. Ed Woodward and the United Board basically gave him a blank cheque to sign who he wanted. And names such as Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic came to United, even without Champions League football. That is the aura of Mourinho, the respect he commands. The United Board are ready to dance to his tune and players feel privileged to be playing under him. And he didn’t want 6 or 7 signings like Van Gaal, he just wanted 4. 4 players of fantastic ability and potential, 4 players that have drastically improved this United side, 4 players who have helped Mourinho stamp his authority on the side.
Now recently Neymar said in an interview that he would surely like to work under Mourinho one day, who wouldn’t? Jose Mourinho has a clear transfer strategy. In fact, he has already started working on signing and he already knows what he wants. He is not one whose head is going to be turned in mid-August to go for a player. He likes to sign players before the start of the season to make sure the team work well with each other.
Mourinho has his very own magic room at the Carrington training ground. A room where he directly contacts his targets, in order to persuade them to join the club. And as I said earlier, United pretty much give Jose a blank cheque to go and sign whoever he wants. Until the time Jose departs the club, all of us United fans can be sure of one thing; transfer business. He will sign players that will improve the standards of the team straight away, and players that would become an important part of the football club, players that would definitely not flop.
And make no mistake, transfer activity is very important for a club’s season. If a club buys the wrong players, then it can find itself in a spot of bother, whereas if it buys the right players, then those players can go on to change the club’s season in a positive way. And whilst Jose’s here, we can be assured of the latter. So, Griezmann, Bakayoko and Lindelof in the summer? Well, only time will tell.