Manchester United Reportedly Look to City Model Before Transfer Policy Change

Gianni Verschueren@ReverschPassFeatured ColumnistFebruary 16, 2016

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Manchester United will reportedly change their recruitment structure, drawing inspiration from other top clubs, including rivals Manchester City, on how to tackle the transfer market.

According to a Tuesday report by Neil Custis of the Sun, the Red Devils want to change the current setup, hoping to bring in advisers who can help the manager identify possible transfer targets—like City do with Txiki Begiristain and Ferran Soriano. United's major signings of the last few years have often struggled at their new club, one of the main reasons behind the new policy.

The likes of Radamel Falcao and Angel Di Maria arrived at Old Trafford with much fanfare, but they were unable to live up to the expectations. Memphis Depay still has plenty of time to turn things around, but he too hasn't had the desired impact so far.

A failure to land other high-profile targets also played a part in the change, per Custis:

As well as concern at Old Trafford over some of the players bought over the last two years there has been raised eyebrows at a failure to push some deals through.

United have tried to get the likes of Cesc Fabregas, Gareth Bale and Neymar.

Now United are ready to change that with both the manager and one or two new executives working in tandem.

This will not affect Executive Vice-Chairman Ed Woodward who the Glazers still want at the head of the club.

The club has had some success in the transfer market in the last few years—Anthony Martial and Juan Mata come to mind—but the large amount of new players who have struggled at Old Trafford is alarming.   

The worst example is Di Maria, who was bought for £59.7 million, not handled correctly and sold to Paris Saint-Germain after just one season. In Paris, he has rediscovered his form, and he once again looks like one of the best wingers in the world.   

Duncan Castles of the Sunday Times blames current manager Louis van Gaal:

City have had more success on the transfer market in the last couple of years, and last summer was particularly productive for United's rivals. In Raheem Sterling and Kevin De Bruyne, the Citizens landed two major targets, and the latter in particular immediately improved the team greatly.

Per Custis, Van Gaal has so far spent a staggering £250 million on 11 players. The likes of Daley Blind and Morgan Schneiderlin have found some success, but for such an enormous sum of money, fans would expect better results on the pitch.

Matt Dunham/Associated Press

Former Chelsea boss Jose Mourinho is expected to replace Van Gaal at the end of the season, and he too has had his struggles in the transfer market. The Portuguese manager guided the Blues to the Premier League title last season but failed to bring in reinforcements during the summer, and the results were disastrous.

The lack of activity wasn't entirely Mourinho's fault—Martin Samuel of the Daily Mail claimed he was “furious” at the lack of signings—but he could have pushed harder for new players, and the right players, at that.    

Adding advisers has worked wonders for City, so it may not be a bad idea for United to take some of the pressure off the shoulders of the next manager and follow suit.