Liverpool legend Danny Murphy weighed in on Manchester United’s transfer deals this summer and its pursuit of Borussia Dortmund star Jadon Sancho.
United managed to complete several major signings in the transfer window, including Edinson Cavani, Donny van de Beek from Ajax and Alex Telles from Porto. However, Murphy believes the Red Devils made poor decisions in recruitment when compared to the reigning Premier League champion, which signed Thiago (Bayern Munich), Kostas Tsimikas (Olympiacos) and Diogo Jota (Wolves).
“The summer transfer window was a huge missed opportunity for Manchester United and you feel they’ve lost the momentum they worked so hard to build at the end of last season,” the pundit said in a recent talk with the “Football Index” podcast.
“You compare Manchester United’s poor recruitment to Liverpool’s and they could not be more different in the way they’re able to identify players and get quality deals done,” he continued.
The former Liverpool central midfielder also expressed confusion over its pursuit of Sancho as it appeared that Dortmund was never planning to let go of the youngster.
“I didn’t understand the obsession with signing Jadon Sancho. He’s a wonderful player but it looks like the deal was never really going to happen,” Murphy commented.
Murphy went on to predict that United will not make the Champions League and that United boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer will not last the whole season.
“Manchester United have had a very shaky start to the season and I don’t see them qualifying for the Champions League this season,” the pundit predicted. “I don’t expect Solskjaer to survive the season as Manchester United manager. I like Solskjaer but the recruitment has let him down and I expect him to pay the price.”
Murphy suggested that United team captain Harry Maguire’s legal issues may be affecting his game. In August, Maguire was found guilty of aggravated assault, resisting arrest and repeated bribery attempts after being involved in a fight in Greece.
Furthermore, Murphy speculated that some United players may have become overconfident due to the attention they are getting from the media and fans.
“Their captain Harry Maguire has looked well short of his best and obviously has distractions off the pitch,” he pointed out. “Manchester United had an incredible second half of the season last year and they did very well to secure third position with a place in the Champions League. I wonder if a few of the players started to believe their own hype and that has led to them underperforming this season.”
Meanwhile, United was able to redeem itself after being humiliated by Tottenham Hotspur in their last meeting. On Saturday, the Red Devils dominated Newcastle 4-1. Following the huge comeback win, Solskjaer insisted that the victory marks the start of United’s season.