Man United news: 6 world-class players the Glazers refused to pay up for

Sergio Aguero Manchester City

The Glazer ownership at Manchester United has been under the public spotlight ever since the failed European Super League was announced. 

United‘s owners have been heavily criticised since their initial takeover in 2005, and discontent from the supporters is far from a novel phenomenon.

Fans have been trying to force the American owners out for as long as they have been at the helm.

Their leveraged buyout plunged the club into huge debt and made them deeply unpopular amongst the fanbase, and little has changed ever since. 

The disjointed effort to run the club has been much maligned and a scatter-gun approach to the transfer market, as well as a broader failure to establish a clear identity in the post-Sir Alex Ferguson era, leaves the fans with little faith in the Glazers.

In light of the botched attempts to join a new European Super League, their popularity is at an all-time low.

Over the years the club have struggled to match their rivals in the transfer market and consequently their once noisy neighbours from across Manchester now reign supreme in English football.

Despite that, they have spent astronomical sums in the market, but the decision-making has been questionable at times. 

Indeed, the Red Devils have turned down a handful of opportunities to land world-class players based on the cost of the deal. 

And Planet Football have compiled a list of six of the most high-profile cases of instances in which United didn’t sign a top player due to finances under the Glazer ownership.

Take a look below: 

Sergio Aguero

Sergio Aguero Manchester City

While writing in his book ‘Leading: Lessons in leadership from the legendary Manchester United manager,’ Sir Alex Ferguson admitted that the club were not willing to meet the £35m asking price Sergio Aguero’s agent was demanding while he was still contracted to Atletico Madrid. 

That was a significantly more eye-watering figure back in 2011, but one certainly worth paying for a striker of his quality. 

City took a £38m punt and anyone with a shred of Premier League knowledge knows how smart that decision proved to be. 

Wesley Sneijder 

Wesley Sneijder was one of the most effective playmakers on the planet at his peak.

In 2011, two years into a three-and-a-half year stint at Inter Milan, Sneijder held unofficial talks with United but the club weren’t prepared to meet the Nerazzurri’s £35m asking price. 

For a player who was so integral to Inter’s treble-winning 2009/10 season under Jose Mourinho, that figure looked fair value at the time.

Eden Hazard 

Eden Hazard Real Madrid

Eden Hazard’s reputation may have dwindled at Real Madrid, but he was once the envy of Europe on his ascendancy at Ligue 1 outfit Lille.

Chelsea eventually snapped him up for a reported £32m and he went on to become one of the most successful players in the club’s history. 

However, it could have been a different story had United been willing to pay up.

“To me it was a lot of money. He’s a good player, but £34million? What we’re finding anyway, the climate for buying these top players – not just the transfer fees, the salaries, agents’ fees – is just getting ridiculous now,” said Ferguson about Chelsea’s deal for Hazard.

“In the Hazard deal, Chelsea paid the agent £6million. The (Samir) Nasri situation was the same. It’s all about what you think is value for a player. I am not envious of those deals at all.”

Perhaps Ferguson has a different stance in hindsight. 

Mesut Ozil

It’s not totally clear why Man United didn’t sign Ozil back in 2010. 

The Germany international was in hot-demand and eventually left Werder Bremen for Real Madrid in a £11.5m deal. 

An article published in The Guardian back in August 2010 suggested that United would translate their interest into a formal bid if Ferguson could convince the Glazers that the then up-and-coming 21-year-old represented excellent value for money. 

United missed out in the end and Ozil went on to enjoy a mercurial career with Real Madrid and Arsenal before joining Fenerbahce last summer.

David Villa 

David Villa Barcelona

United missed the opportunity to sign Valencia goal machine David Villa in 2010 having refused to fork out the £36m Barcelona paid to secure his signature. 

Just one year later the Spanish legend scored an exquisite goal against United in the Champions League final, finessing the ball beyond Edwin van der Sar to secure the 3-1 victory. 

Jadon Sancho

The most recent entry on the list could yet join the Red Devils. 

According to The Athletic, Joel Glazer wasn’t prepared to meet Borussia Dortmund’s €120m (£104m) asking price for Sancho last summer despite the fact club insiders believed he was worth it. 

Now valued at a reported £78m, will the Glazers be willing to finally stump up the cash for one of world football’s most captivating young players? 

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