United have already brought in Jadon Sancho and are also set to complete a deal to sign Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane
Varane deal ‘a sign of Man Utd’s aims’
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer knows the pressure is firmly on him to deliver success this season after being backed in the transfer market by Manchester United.
United have been quickest out of the blocks in the transfer market this summer, with the combined £115million capture of Jadon Sancho and Raphael Varane.
Solskjaer admitted he could not have asked for more backing from the United hierarchy, with potentially two more arrivals before the window closes, with his total transfer spend since taking charge in 2018 already at £385.5m.
But that financial backing comes with the condition of delivering trophies, with Solskjaer under pressure to deliver United’s first silverware since the Europa League triumph of 2017, under his predecessor Jose Mourinho.
“As a manager, you can’t ask for more backing when you’ve got the two in as early as we have,” said Solskjaer.
“Every manager would be happy the sooner and the earlier the deals are done. This year we’ve managed to get it sorted.
“The two we’ve got in will make a huge difference for us, this season short-term and also long-term.
“Raphael is in his prime, he’s the same age as Harry Maguire, a year older than Eric Bailly and a couple years older than Victor. I’ve got a fantastic group of centre-backs.
“With Jadon as well, and with the young forwards we’ve got, it’s exciting.”
United have been accused of acting indecisively and late in transfer windows in recent years, but Solskajer said their decisive and early movement this summer to secure high-profile targets has given them the best possible chance of success.
“We’ve scrambled before towards the end of the window,” said Solskjaer. “Now I have to say I think we’re in a good position.”
Meanwhile, United have cancelled a pre-season friendly with Preston after positive Covid cases at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils confirmed a “small number” of first-team players and staff had tested positive via lateral flow tests taken on Thursday, forcing them to isolate.
It is understood eight United players and staff tested positive.
The outbreak has caused Friday’s friendly at Preston, in front of an expected crowd of 16,000, to be cancelled.
Those who have tested positive are now isolating, pending further tests.
A statement on United’s website reads: “Maintaining Covid security is a priority for Manchester United.
“Following routine testing of the first-team training group on Thursday, we have identified a small number of suspected positive cases.
“This has led to those people isolating, pending further tests.
“As a precautionary measure based on Covid protocols, we have taken the difficult decision that we will not now be able to play the friendly match against Preston North End this Saturday.
“We regret the disruption to Preston North End and disappointment caused to fans.