Manchester United’s executive vice-chairman, Ed Woodward, has revealed the club have been in deep discussions with numerous agents and insisted the world’s top stars were still interested in moving to Old Trafford.
There had been fears among fans of the Red Devils that last season’s seventh place finish under David Moyes, meaning the club would not qualify for the Champions League for the first time in 19 years, could see top players turned off joining this summer.
No worries about attraction
However, Woodward was bullish in an interview with official club television station MUTV in claiming that new manager Louis van Gaal would have the opportunity to sign some well established stars should he want them and that there was plenty of interest from the other side.
"I've experienced a lot of conversations with agents and players and we are still a huge attraction to top football stars around the world - there is no doubt about that,” he said in the interview.
"We've already invested in two new fantastic players."
Worries over the attraction of Old Trafford were intensified by the fact that the Manchester United squad looked as though it needed its biggest overhaul in a long time, as a number of senior stars were either leaving or looking well past their best.
Rio Ferdinand and Nemnaja Vidic have left on free transfers, while Patrice Evra, Nani, and Javier Hernandez have all been heavily linked with moves away. This exodus is added to the retirement of Ryan Giggs and the loss of form in the likes of Michael Carrick, Shinji Kagawa, Antonio Valencia, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones.
Big name boost?
Recruiting a high profile name like Van Gaal was seen as a strategy to combat any damage to the club’s image, so it helped that he was lauded as one of the best managers around when leading the Netherlands at the World Cup in Brazil.
The two signings Woodward was referring to are Ander Herrera and Luke Shaw, with both snapped up from Athletic Bilbao and Southampton respectively in the region of £30million.
Marquee name needed
While both are very promising players, neither is exactly a marquee name and fans will be worried that the injection of experience and quality that would bring about a boost in morale is yet to appear.
Although that may yet come after Van Gaal has a chance to gauge the quality in his squad as they head out to the US for their pre-season tour.The Dutchman only took up the reins this week and Woodward was open about him having significant funds to strengthen the squad once he had made his decision over a number of players.