The signing of Juan Mata in January gave Manchester United fans some hope this summer would be vastly different to our shambles of a transfer window last year.
However, it has been anything but so far as with the World Cup starting in just three days, United have made no new signings, that is of course unless you count our new partner Cho-A-Pharm who will now be the club’s official pharmaceutical distributor in Korea and Vietnam.
Cho-A-Pharm’s addition means that United now have 36 commercial partners.
At a time where there has been nothing but delays, twists and U-turns in terms of signing players, the club is all too happy to shout about a new commercial partner which is the last thing United fans want to see.
Our dwindling ability to negotiate for players has been matched by a meteoric corporate rise that has seen us sign tomato juice partners, tyre partners and now, for all your paracetamol needs, pharmaceutical partners.
Is there anything the club can’t make money out of?
Ed Woodward earned some stripes with the negotiation process of Mata but has swiftly lost them again this summer. He is a salesman who has struggled to adapt to the wicked world of buying players and United are suffering because of it.
There were obviously delays because of the arrival of Louis van Gaal but take the Luke Shaw deal for example. Southampton selling Rickie Lambert to Liverpool shows they are willing to let their players leave if the deal is right for them which indicates United are refusing to budge unless a deal is on their terms, a move which saw us lose out on so many players last year.
This is not a time to try and save a bit of money because if we lose out on our top targets again, last season might not be just an anomaly. What’s an extra £3m for Shaw if we are already willing to pay £27m?
The theory behind all of these new commercial partners is that it should inject more cash into the club that can then be invested into players. Of course, the Glazers’ greedy hand means it is not as straight forward as that but we’re not in a position to negotiate ‘value in the market’ deals.
We had a terrible season and clubs know we need to buy players. It puts them in a position of power which they can negotiate with and it is a power they are clearly exercising. United need to just bite the bullet and secure the players because if we don’t, we’re just shooting ourselves in the foot.