Manchester United have drawn up a shortlist of four players for each position Jose Mourinho has identified as being in need of strengthening this summer, according to a new report.
The Daily Mail have delved into the machinations of the Glazer family’s ownership of the Old Trafford giants to reveal a well-oiled transfer machine that is already whirring into action ahead of the re-opening of the window.
United’s executive vice chairman is the club’s chief negotiator, often basing himself out of the club’s London offices, speaking with the manager and owners via video conference calls to finalise transfer plans.
The Glazers are publicly appearing to take a backseat from events in Manchester by continuing to base themselves out in Florida, where they also own an NFL franchise in Florida, but remain active behind the scenes.
Mourinho has the final say on purchases and the Red Devils hierarchy are keen to get their business done early on this summer and avoid deadline-day drama as clubs rush to get deals over the line.
The Special One this month gave an interview to France Football, expressing his gratitude towards United’s owners and taking a sly dig at his former club Chelsea and reigning Premier League champions Leicester City.
He said: “Even in this country (England), which is home to tradition and stability, everything is in the process of becoming screwed up.
“The clubs are owned by foreign investors, no longer by traditional English people with the policies that came with that.
“In my case, at Manchester United, it is different. I am lucky to have stable, intelligent owners who understand the English mentality in terms of the project and patience.
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“The problem, is that modern society is toppling this stability.
“I lost matches at the beginning of the season, or sometimes I did not win them. I felt the confidence of my board. They said to me: “You have time, work. We believe in you.” Outside, it was different.”
United have made Atletico Antoine Griezmann their number one transfer target this summer as the club prepares to wave goodbye to all-time leading goalscorer Wayne Rooney.
Buying Griezmann will force the Red Devils to fork out a similarly eye-watering fee to the one required to prise Paul Pogba from Juventus last summer in a world-record deal.
Spanish newspaper Sport have today claimed the Manchester giants are even ready to spend as much as £173million to snap up Barcelona’s Neymar – not to mention doubling the Brazilian’s wages to entice him to England.
United’s business model and ability to sign these superstar names hinges on the commercial deals signed by the club as their brand remains stronger than ever despite struggles on the field.
Just two members of staff represented United’s total commercial workforce when the Glazers took control in 2005 and that number soon grew to more than 150 people.
The fruits of their labour include United’s 10-year kit deal with German sportswear manufacturer is worth £750million, which is only slightly less than the Americans paid to buy the club outright.