Manchester United fans should not expect blockbuster signings this summer

Sir Jim Ratcliffe outside Manchester United stadium Old Trafford.

REUTERS/Phil Noble

Ownership changes are a matter of much excitement at any football club, especially given the staple of expectations which usually follow. In the recent trends, this has usually meant a healthy cash injection into the side translating into big money arrivals in the nearest transfer window.

While Financial Fair Play regulations have reined in this approach quite a bit, there is still plenty of leeway for new owners to make their presence felt.

Thus, when Sir Jim Ratcliffe and his INEOS acquisition succeeded in their partial ownership of Manchester United, a lot of hope was pinned on big-name arrivals in the summer to come.

However, the boss may have something else in mind.

When quizzed on GTCyclingClub (via Fabrizio Romano) candidly about the possibility of Kylian Mbappe, who looks to be very much available in a few months, joining the Mancunian giants, SJR was clear in his approach.

He replied stating: “Mbappé to Man United? I’d try to find the next Mbappé rather than spend a fortune trying to buy success.”

While this will certainly disappoint some supporters it ought to relieve those who are tired of seeing loads of money being heaped upon big-name signings at the club only for flops and issues to emerge down the line.

SJR went on to add some nuance to his decision, stating: “It’s not that clever to sign Mbappé now, it’s more challenging to find the next Mbappé, next Bellingham or next Roy Keane.”

This is certainly true in the modern game where there is a bigger premium on developing promising academy talent and then selling them off or capitalizing on their success. Man United certainly have a rich tradition of the same as evidenced in the club’s long list of icons.

With the likes of Alejandro Garnacho and Kobbie Mainoo making regular headlines, could this approach pay dividends sooner rather than later?