Manchester United's signings under Ed Woodward ranked after resignation

  • Kat Lucas

The first head has officially rolled amidst the fallout over the European Super League. 

Ed Woodward announced his resignation as Manchester United's chief executive vice-chairman on Tuesday night as the club confirmed their withdrawal, alongside the Premier League's five other breakaway clubs.

It brings the curtain down on a reign which began in 2013 when David Gill stepped down - and many fans will forever view Woodward's tenure as synonymous with the failures of the post-Ferguson era. 

The 49-year-old oversaw a transfer outlay of over £1bn but failed to deliver a title, despite hiring four different permanent managers. 

United have only recently relented into bringing in a Director of Football and in truth, it's been much-needed for a long time. 

When Woodward was responsible for incomings and outgoings, his decisions were often deeply unpopular. Looking back at his several dozen signings, it's easy to see why. 

GIVEMESPORT have been re-visiting United's revolving doors since 2013 and while some of their business has been decent - such as the free signings of Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Edinson Cavani - other arrivals have been divisive, expensive, or just downright awful. Here's how the rankings measure up:

Complete joke 

Radamel Falcao

Alexis Sanchez


Falcao, meanwhile, scored just four goals, largely because he had never recovered from his ACL injury. The less said about Sanchez, the better, with just five goals in two years. 

Not Man Utd level


Marouane Fellaini

Alex Telles

Daniel James

Diogo Dalot

Nemanja Matic


Lee Grant

Morgan Schneiderlin

Bastian Schweinsteiger

Henrikh Mkhitaryan

Matteo Darmian

Memphis Depay

Daley Blind

Angel Di Maria

We make it 13 players who fall into this category. To be fair to Fellaini, he did a job at Everton - but his combative, physical style made him an odd fit, in more ways than one, at Old Trafford. The Belgian even ended up being booed by fans. David Moyes' statement signing, but one which ultimately epitomised Woodward's failure to back the Scotsman and send him down a one-way path to failure.

Memphis Depay has impressed at Lyon, but during his time at United, he failed to make the grade and made a mockery of claims he would live up to the famous number 7 shirt. Di Maria, likewise, is of course one of Europe's most scintillating attackers, but he failed to settle in England. 

Fred has had his moments in central midfield, though he lacks discipline. Blind and Darmian weren't regular starters and Matic's best years were behind him by the time he left Chelsea. 


Harry Maguire

Anthony Martial

Paul Pogba 


Victor Lindelof

We're not talking poor signings, but £80m for Maguire and £89m for Pogba continues to raise eyebrows even now. Martial has scored 78 goals for the club; it's just a shame he blows hot and cold too often and Lindelof, similarly, is capable of proving himself a solid partner for Maguire but makes too many slip-ups. 


Amad Diallo

Facundo Pellistri

Donny van de Beek


Milinkovic-Savic never even got a work permit. Diallo has looked very impressive in the limited moments we've seen from him so far - and speaking of untapped potential, need we remind Ole Gunnar Solskjaer that he's got Van de Beek sat there on the bench. 

Good business

Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Eric Bailly

Ander Herrera

Romelu Lukaku

Sergio Romero

Luke Shaw

Edinson Cavani

Odion Ighalo

Bruno Fernandes

Aaron Wan-Bissaka

Juan Mata

Lukaku's £75m price tag might have teetered him into the overpriced category and he got his fair share of stick at United - but we feel it was unfair. The striker scored 42 goals in just 96 games and he's shown at Inter Milan that he's still one of Europe's best hitmen. Much like Ibrahimovic, in fact, who didn't cost a penny and averaged more than a goal every other game. 

Cavani has been another steal on a free transfer and some of his teammates have also helped the club to regenerate under Solskjaer - not least Fernandes, arguably the Premier League Player of the Season. Shaw is finally returning to his early levels and while at right-back, Wan-Bissaka was a costly addition from Crystal Palace, a player of his quality was never going to cost less than £50m in the current market. 

History will no doubt remember Woodward unkindly at Old Trafford. The European Super League will play a huge part in defining his legacy, but the seven and a half years that preceded it won't be forgotten either. 

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