Ezequiel Garay Claims David Moyes Blocked Manchester United Transfer

Ben BlackmoreFeatured ColumnistOctober 14, 2013

BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA - OCTOBER 11: Ezequiel Garay (R) of Argentina vies for the ball with Luis Ramirez of Peru during a match between Argentina and Peru as part of the 17th round of the South American Qualifiers for the FIFA's World Cup Brazil 2014 at Antonio Vespucio Liberti Stadium on October 11, 2013 in Buenos Aires, Argentina. (Photo by Buda Mendes/Getty Images)
Buda Mendes/Getty Images

Manchester United’s appointment of David Moyes may directly have cost the club the signing of Ezequiel Garay, according to quotes reported by John Cross of the Daily Mirror.

Garay has spoken candidly of what he considers to be substantial summer interest from United. A deal in the region of £18 million, reports Cross, was on the table, but Moyes cooled the club’s interest:

I believed I was going to join Manchester United in the summer. The deal was nearly closed but finally Benfica did not accept the offer.

I believe the exit of Ferguson has influenced the deal. Moyes did not believe in me as much but that's not a problem.

There are several reasons for why Moyes may have pulled the plug on Garay’s £18 million switch, not least the fact he needed to assess his squad before deciding where to strengthen.

The United boss has spent the majority of the season insisting he is learning about his players, so it is likely he would not have been keen to sanction an £18 million outlay for a player wanted by the former regime.

Looking at United’s squad on paper, the central defensive area is well-stocked. Nemanja Vidic and Rio Ferdinand have Jonny Evans, Chris Smalling and Phil Jones for support, so an extra body was not a pressing concern.

Having seen Ferdinand’s start to the campaign, which has included poor performances against Manchester City and West Brom, Garay’s presence has arguably been missed by the champions.

However, Moyes’ summer transfer activity—in addition to his reported January targets—suggests he has identified more concerning weaknesses elsewhere in the United squad.

SUNDERLAND, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 05:  David Moyes, manager of Manchester United shows his frustration at the assistant referee's decision during the Barclays Premier League match between Sunderland and Manchester United at the Stadium of Light on October 5,
Michael Regan/Getty Images

The Scot spent all summer trying to lure a ball-playing playmaker, missing out on Cesc Fabregas, Thiago Alcantara and Ander Herrera. He landed Marouane Fellaini but clearly wanted another for his midfield.

Now Moyes is being linked to another attacking midfielder in Remy Cabella of Montpellier—per Jamie Sanderson of Metroso it is likely he felt the price tag proposed for Garay could be better spent elsewhere.

Garay, at the age of 27, is finally reaching maturity and showing the technical excellence he always promised as one of Europe’s highest-rated young defenders at Real Madrid.

At 6’4” the Argentinian is a domineering presence who can play from the back, although it is questionable he represents a better long-term option than Smalling, who appears to be the ideal replacement for Ferdinand when the veteran eventually retires.