ARTICLES Opinion

Rating all of Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s signings at Manchester United

After being rewarded with a three year contract, Ole Gunnar Solskjær seems to have the backing in the transfer market this summer too. Jadon Sancho has joined the Reds and Real Madrid‘s Raphael Varane will follow in his footsteps after United announced that they have agreed a deal in principle to sign the Frenchman.

The Norwegian manager has overseen 13 incoming transfers in his Manchester United tenure so far. This article will look into each signing that has been made under Solskjær’s rule, and will give them a rating out of 10.

Daniel James – 6/10

Daniel James joined the club from Swansea and was Solskjær’s first signing. He hasn’t had all the love from the United supporters due to a lack of ability on the ball, but for just £16 million, James has offered some solid performances throughout his tenure so far and is a decent squad player to have.

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – 7.5/10

‘The Spider’ has been a crucial member of the side since he joined at the start of 2019/20. Wan-Bissaka’s availability has been amazing since he started wearing Red. Perhaps the best one-on-one defender in Europe, we’ve seen some many a masterclass from the right-back against skilful wingers, yet he does have areas to improve in his game to be regarded as a great right-back.

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Harry Maguire – 8.5/10

Yes, there were eyebrows raised when Manchester United bought Leicester City‘s Harry Maguire for around £80 million. However, his performances over the course of the last season especially have proved that he is one of the best centre-backs around and while it was a heavy price, it wasn’t so crazy looking back now. United captain. Ever-reliable in the backline. A leader. A solid signing, but the price tag and inconsistencies in his first season slightly knock his rating down.

Bruno Fernandes – 9.5/10

Do we need to say anything? Bruno Fernandes joined the club when it was at one of it’s worst points in years, and was mostly responsible for a complete turnaround for the side. His output since joining has simply been world-class and even though he can be frustrating at times, he is easily the best signing of the Ole Gunnar Solskjær era so far.

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Odion Ighalo – 5/10

A weird one. Odion Ighalo was at the club for a year on loan after joining in January 2020. With 21 appearances to his name and just seven starts, a five goal return isn’t that bad in reality, but it was just a bit of a strange signing and a waste of wages for the most part. I guess we can’t forget about that volley against LASK in the Europa League though…

Donny van de Beek – 4/10

Hopefully this one can change dramatically in 12 months time, but looking at the signing now, it’s probably the worst bit of business we’ve made since Ole took charge. For £40 million, United could’ve strengthened their areas of concern, but it was instead spent on a player who would have to play second-fiddle to Bruno Fernandes the entire season. We all know that Donny van de Beek is a top player, but he struggled to adapt in his first season, seemingly due to tactical implications. He’s settled in now though and is more used to the squad and tactics, let’s hope that he proves to be yet another good bit of business.

Alex Telles – 7/10

As the first purchase before the 2020/21 campaign, Alex Telles was a great purchase. At a low cost of around £18 million, Telles has provided solid back-up to Luke Shaw. While he did not perhaps to get the chance to properly show what he’s about last season, it’s clear that he’s a tidy player with a lot of experience.

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Edinson Cavani – 8.5/10

While it seemed like a deal that United needed to stay away from, getting Edinson Cavani on a free transfer has been great business and it’s even better that he decided to extend his stay at Old Trafford. The veteran striker still has an incredible workrate and has shown the United supporters what a real striker looks like again. El Matador was great on the pitch last season but he also is helping the young forwards at United off-the-pitch too. A great signing and he broke the number seven curse.

Facundo Pellistri – 6/10

Facundo Pellistri, the young Uruguayan, has caught a fair few eyes with his performances so far in pre-season, he’s a talented young winger who impressed in the Under-23s last season and had a decent loan spell away in Spain. While his rating can’t be too high considering he hasn’t made a competitive first-team appearance, for just £8 million, it seems like a great investment.

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Amad – 7/10

Similar to Pellistri, Amad signed last summer with the majority of fans having little knowledge of him or his game. He didn’t come to Manchester until January but proved quickly that he was a brilliant talent through his performances for the Under-23s and also the first-team. A higher price, at around £20 million, but Amad looks to be a top, top talent and could be involved in the first-team yet again next season.

Tom Heaton – 6/10

Now onto the signings that United have made this summer. This was a surprising one when it was made, but bringing Tom Heaton in on a free could prove to be some good business. He’s proven as a solid goalkeeper in the league and will be good competition for whoever dons the number one shirt, as well as providing some good experience for the young squad.

Jadon Sancho – 9/10

We got him. Jadon Sancho has been chased by United since 2017 and almost joined The Reds last year, but we’ve had to wait 12 months for him to join the club. You only have to look at his numbers to realise that he’s a world class player, but then when you actually watch him, you realise that £73 million is an absolute steal. United have lacked a right-winger for a fair few years but they finally have their man. Although he is yet to kick a ball for the club, it is abundently clear that he will be a massive hit at Old Trafford next season, with millions of Reds eager to see him have fun.

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Raphael Varane – 9/10

While the Jadon Sancho transfer was a brilliant deal, this might just trump it. A world-cup winner. A four time Champions League winner. And United have got him for a reported £42 million including add-ons, what a deal for Raphael Varane. His profile is the exact one that we need alongside Harry Maguire and hopefully they can strike up a solid partnership. For the experience and ability, it’s a great deal and it’ll be surreal to see him in Red soon.

Overall?

For the most part, the recruitment under Ole has been a breath of fresh air. We are getting top quality into the football club while also keeping a great team moral. This summer will probably top the previous two and if we add any more quality signings to the equation, it won’t be a competition.

The signings under Ole Gunnar Solskjær have been a success for the most part and while we need to see how the new ones settle into the club, an overall rating of 8/10 sounds about right for now.

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