So, after three years of searching high-and-you’d-suspect-low for their first-ever Director of Football Manchester United have settled on Manchester United’s John Murtough for the role. United are so invested in finally having a Director of Football, they’ve decided to call him Football Director.
You dread to think how much was spent on high-level executive search consultancy fees in this time – money that could have been spent on far more important things like clearing some of the debt the Glaziers have still got against the club.
It is peak Ed Woodward though – a slight restructure being sold as a historic step forward. Let’s hope Brunaldo is as forthright in calling this sham out as he is calling out his teammates in post-match interviews.
Darren Fletcher is now the club’s technical director which also tickled me salmon pink. Of all the players United have had over the years, Fletcher was one of the least technically memorable was far more commended for his charging around the pitch and breaking play up. Yes, of course I understand that doesn’t mean anything when it comes to being a ‘technical director’ but I’ll reserve judgement until we actually know what Fletcher’s remit is.
We are led to believe that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer and the massively resourced scouting and data departments at Carrington will still have a major say in recruitment at United – so the breaking news that the club want to reward Edinson Cavani with a long-term deal after yesterday’s outburst from his father is far from surprising.
As we said yesterday, look forward to another summer of mindlessly chasing Jadon Sancho and Erling Haaland and ending up with neither.
However, United fans can whet their collective whistles with the latest rumours – Raphael Varane is likely to be leaving Real Madrid so, obvs, he is being linked to the Red Devils. And with Ronaldo failing once again with the sole mission he was brought to Turin to do – win Juventus the Champions League – he is thought to be looking around for a new challenge. Old Trafford linked? You betcha.
Eric Bailly is watching all this go on and has decided that he does feel a bit undervalued and he fancies a return to La Liga instead, please.
Speaking of new deals, Peppy G and the Manchester City board are very keen to pop round to Kevin de Bruyne’s and offer him an improved contract extension after the Belgian rejected City’s opening offer. You’d think they’d want that sorted out pretty quickly given his performance against Southampton last night.
The champions-elect might have conceded two (a fact that pleases this Fantasy Football player greatly given John Stones was rested), but they scored five against Hassenhuttl’s team. Southampton’s manager must be hoping there are no more trips north left for his team this season given the alacrity at which they concede goals further up the country than Birmingham.
Former Chelsea dressing room dweller Glen Johnson thinks the current crew should take a long hard look at themselves given how they’ve suddenly looked like footballers again since Frank left and Thomas Tuchel arrived. Now, now Glen. It’s not as if you and any of your old muckers suddenly transformed back into world-beaters having seen off a gaffer you didn’t rate now, is it?
Tuchel is believed to be keen to use Tomori as a bit of AC Milan bait to bring midfield strong man Franck Kessie to Stamford Bridge. Kessie would definitely earn the tag of ‘enforcer’ quite quickly, yet his penalties are as gentle as Jorginho’s, randomly.
It’s not all bad for Liverpool – Mo Salah has won the Premier League Goal of the Month award for his strike against Leicester City. Oh, and Ozan Kabak has admitted life in the Premier League has been a little difficult to adjust to. At least your performances to date have hidden that fact, eh Ozan? In fairness, Liverpool should be home from home for the young Turk – Schalke used to lose every week as well.
Moments after Gini Wijnaldum announced it would break his heart to leave the club, Antonio Conte flicked back to the page in his ‘How to Win Serie A’ guide marked ‘just buy Premier League players’ and registered his interest in taking the Dutchman to the San Siro.
Actually on the pitch, Liverpool slipped past RB Leipzig in the soon-to-be-expanded-and-kill-the-League-Cup Champions League. Mo and Sadio Mane got the all-important goals, but Jurgey-lad was able to wax lyrical about Fabinho ‘on the 6’. Jurgen, I’d really not mentioned the number 6 after last week’s GIF explosion.