The Red Devils have done some poor business in the transfer market under their American owners – but which players stand out as the worst?
After 18 years of protests, controversy, disillusion and division, it appears the Glazer family’s tenure at Manchester United is finally coming to an end. Or at least, that’s what most United fans are still hoping amid an exhausting takeover saga that looks set to drag on through to the start of the 2023-24 campaign.
United had been debt-free until the Glazers invested just £270 million (£346m) of their own money into the £790m ($1 billion) deal that saw them become new owners back in 2005, with the rest borrowed against the club. And the Glazers have been accused of using the Red Devils as a cash cow to fund their business empire in the United States ever since.
They haven’t attempted to build any bridges with the United faithful either, rarely bothering to attend matches or push through Old Trafford expansion plans. Co-chairman Joel Glazer has overseen the business side of things for United from the comforts of his office in Washington, which serves as further proof of their status as absentee owners.
However, no one could ever accuse the Glazers of failing to invest in the first-team squad. United have spent close to £2bn ($2.6bn) on new players since their arrival, including a club-record outlay of £210m ($269m) in the 2022 summer transfer window. And, United have won 13 major trophies under the American family, including five Premier League titles and the Champions League.
But regular silverware has proven hard to come by for the Red Devils since Sir Alex Ferguson’s departure as manager in 2013, with most of the club’s most high-profile signings proving to be huge disappointments. Money doesn’t always guarantee success, as GOAL is here to highlight with our definitive ranking of United’s biggest flop signings of the Glazer era: