Manchester United arguably blew all expectations out of the window now that this transfer window has come to a close.
In terms of arrivals, the Red Devils got a dynamic combination of potential, experience, and commercial brilliance all wrapped up in a relatively smaller sum than that spent by most European giants on individual marquee signings.
Let us have a look at and rate each of United’s pieces of transfer this blockbuster summer.
1. Tom Heaton – 7.0
Arguably the easiest name to rate on this list. While a lot has been said about another prodigal return, Heaton’s transfer from Aston Villa was also a homecoming of sorts. Having said that, the 35-year-old is unlikely to make any major strides with the side and will likely be a companion to Lee Grant on the sidelines.
In this respect, this transfer highlights the larger tussle for the no.1 spot between David De Gea and Dean Henderson, especially since now United may fancy themselves for a European title as well as the Premier League crown.
2. Raphael Varane – 8.5
The rousing Old Trafford welcome alone illustrates how important such a signing is for the side. Building on the prior point about a potential European title, United have acquired the perfect player to make inroads even there. While Harry Maguire and Victor Lindelof were a strong defensive duo in their own respect, it cannot be denied that the two often made the precise sort of errors that would become high-profile gaffes in a massive Champions League encounter.
It is in this respect that Varane’s arrival gains importance as it ensures that an experienced figure would helm the defense with a winning mentality to boot. Keeping this in mind, it is important to shift the debate from whether or not the Frenchman is Premier League ready to whether or not he will be able to retain his trusted European charm.
3. Jadon Sancho – 9.5
While the other name on this list would undeniably steal the objective hallmark for the best transfer for the window, one can certainly argue that Sancho’s arrival is the most important one for Old Trafford keeping the long-term picture in mind.
Of recent, the potential of young talent bursting onto the scene with blockbuster transfer fees and then realizing their potential was best seen in the meteoric rise of Kylian Mbappe. Whilst these come with their obvious misses, like Barcelona’s Ousmane Dembele saga, the kind of performances Erling Braut Haaland has been putting in does shift the balance quite a bit.
Within this context, Sancho could easily become the vital cog that United will need to establish continued dominance in the Premier League for the decade ahead. Sancho also ties in well with the other young figures making their mark in the attacking trident, especially if Mason Greenwood is able to ape Marcus Rashford’s career arc.
4. Cristiano Ronaldo – 10
They say no transfer is perfect and yet this one feels like it may just meet that benchmark. Apart from bringing in a player who still continues to push the boundary of what may be considered the “peak” of a career, Ronaldo too brings in heaps of experience.
This has certainly proved to be a much-needed shot in the arm for a fan-base that has for far too long been swimming in bleak waters. In particular, the fact that the promised resurgence under Solskjaer took its sweet time coming and that too bereft of silverware meant that the side was increasingly becoming disenchanted with any promise of success.
Re-enter Ronaldo and the dynamic changes quite a bit. In particular, the manner in which the morale has been lifted and a winning mentality curated by the likes of Bruno Fernandes has now been handed a much-needed booster shot.
Sales – 7.0
While the conversation around departures at United as of recent has often been around clearing deadwood, this window did a better task at clearing up surplus talent instead.
The sale of Daniel James was a smart move in terms of the money earnt. Meanwhile, the loan moves of the likes of Facundo Pellistri, Andreas Pereira, Axel Tuanzebe, and Brandon Williams illustrates effective development agendas at play for youth talent.