What the papers say

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Read the latest Manchester United news, transfer rumours, match reports, fixtures and live scores from the Guardian
Updated: 9 min 43 sec ago

Gakpo to Gvardiol: how the January window is looking for transfer targets

Sat, 12/24/2022 - 10:00

Premier League clubs are gearing up for the new year sales but the winter World Cup could hike individual price tags

PSV’s plan was to let the Netherlands international move in the summer but after his exceptional World Cup he has a chance to leave in January. Erik ten Hag is a big fan and Manchester United remain interested, making contact with the 23-year-old’s agents. Negotiations between the clubs have not started, though, and it depends on how much United are willing to invest in a forward. PSV wanted €50m last summer but are now demanding more than €60m.

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Title race, battle for top four and relegation scrap: the Premier League is back

Fri, 12/23/2022 - 18:00

As the English top flight returns after the World Cup we look at how the teams shape up going into the season’s second half

When Premier League festivities resume on Boxing Day the smart money is on Arsenal and Manchester City slugging it out for the title until May in what could be a contest for the ages. Leading their sides in a classic master-apprentice matchup is City’s near-peerless manager, Pep Guardiola, and his former assistant and now Arsenal No 1, Mikel Arteta.

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Erik ten Hag on Martínez's and Varane's emotions after World Cup final – video

Fri, 12/23/2022 - 15:20

Manchester United manager Erik ten Hag has given some insight into Lisandro Martínez and Raphaël Varane's emotions after the pair faced each other in the World Cup final. Argentina's Martínez has been celebrating success in Buenos Aires, while the France defender Varane is 'disappointed about losing the final', Ten Hag said.

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Erik ten Hag says Newcastle and Chelsea join Manchester United in needing a top-four finish

Fri, 12/23/2022 - 13:30
  • United manager admits there is ‘big pressure for all of us’
  • Ten Hag dismisses World Cup break as an excuse for poor form

Erik ten Hag accepts he is under pressure to ensure Manchester United qualify for the Champions League but believes Newcastle’s Eddie Howe and Chelsea’s Graham Potter also have to achieve a top-four finish.

On Tuesday, United will host Nottingham Forest. They are currently in fifth, three points behind Spurs and one more off Newcastle, having played a game less than both. Ten Hag was asked if he acknowledges United have to finish at least fourth this year.

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Manchester United 2-0 Burnley: Carabao Cup fourth round – as it happened

Wed, 12/21/2022 - 22:30

Marcus Rashford scored a fine individual goal as Manchester United beat Burnley, while League One Charlton shocked Brighton at the Valley

4 min: The game at Ewood Park has also kicked off, incidentally. No goals in any of the three fourth-round ties yet. Though there was nearly a surprise one at Old Trafford, with Gudmundsson crossing from the right, and Barnes flashing a header not too far wide of the right-hand post. The flag had gone up for offside, though it looked pretty tight. Probably just as well for all concerned that the ball didn’t go in, then, because there’s no VAR in the League Cup until the semi-final stage.

2 min: There’s a reduced capacity at Old Trafford tonight as a result of the ambulance workers strike. Solidarity.

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Marcus Rashford solo goal helps Manchester United beat Burnley

Wed, 12/21/2022 - 22:21

On 57 minutes Marcus Rashford showed the finest way to return from a World Cup. The No 10 collected inside Manchester United’s half and, after turning the afterburners on, propelled himself at Jordan Beyer along the right. The centre-back kept backpedalling and Rashford kept coming until slick footwork bedazzled the Burnley man and in a flash, Bailey Peacock-Farrell was beaten by a laser of a finish, on the angle, from inside the area.

For Rashford, a star turn for England at Qatar 2022 with three goals, this was a ninth United goal this season – perhaps his finest for the club – and ensured Erik ten Hag’s side are in the quarter-finals. Against Vincent Kompany’s Championship leaders they managed to be dominant and undercooked, the latter characteristic no surprise given their five-week layoff.

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Manchester United extend contracts of Rashford, Shaw, Dalot and Fred

Tue, 12/20/2022 - 16:57
  • Club trigger standard one-year extensions for quartet
  • United also in talks with David de Gea about new deal

Manchester United have triggered the one-year contract extensions of Marcus Rashford, Luke Shaw, Diogo Dalot and Fred, and are in positive discussions with David de Gea regarding a new deal that would reduce the goalkeeper’s basic salary from about £300,000 a week.

Rashford, Shaw, Dalot and De Gea are first-choices under Erik ten Hag, and Fred is a squad player. If United had not chosen to take up the 12-month-options that are standard in their contracts for players under 30, Rashford, Shaw, Dalot and Fred would have been free in January to discuss moves to overseas clubs, as De Gea will be if he does not agree a new contract before the end of the month.

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Erik ten Hag believes Manchester United sale by Glazers would be good

Thu, 12/15/2022 - 10:41
  • Manager led to believe ‘there will be more investment possible’
  • Avram Glazer says owners ‘going forward’ with their process

Erik ten Hag has said the Glazer family’s decision to explore a sale of Manchester United could be a good thing and that he has been reassured any change in ownership would not affect the “objectives, goals and culture” of the club.

United’s US owners began looking at options last month, including new investment or a potential sale, 17 years after buying the club.

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Erik ten Hag believes Manchester United sale by Glazers would be good

Thu, 12/15/2022 - 10:41
  • Manager led to believe ‘there will be more investment possible’
  • Avram Glazer says owners ‘going forward’ with their process

Erik ten Hag has said the Glazer family’s decision to explore a sale of Manchester United could be a good thing and that he has been reassured any change in ownership would not affect the “objectives, goals and culture” of the club.

United’s US owners began looking at options last month, including new investment or a potential sale, 17 years after buying the club.

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Ten Hag unsure when Jadon Sancho will make Manchester United return

Wed, 12/14/2022 - 08:40
  • Manager refers to ‘physical but also mental’ issues for forward
  • Sancho working away from squad with a coach in Netherlands

Erik ten Hag does not know when Jadon Sancho will return to action with Manchester United, saying there are “physical but also mental” issues to deal with.

The forward started the season well with three goals before the international break in September, but has not played since United’s 1-1 draw at Chelsea on 22 October. Ten Hag said he had seen a notable dip in Sancho’s confidence after the 22-year-old was left out of the England squad for the Nations League matches in September.

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PSG reveal interest in signing ‘amazing’ Marcus Rashford for next season

Thu, 12/08/2022 - 19:39
  • PSG president says club could pursue January talks with forward
  • Manchester United deal ends in June but with option to extend

Paris St Germain would be interested in signing Marcus Rashford from Manchester United at the end of the season, according to their president, Nasser al-Khelaifi. The England forward will be out of contract in June, although United have an option to extend for a further year.

Rashford has scored eight goals for United this season and three for England in Qatar to help them reach the quarter-finals of the World Cup.

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Happy returns: will early World Cup exits benefit Premier League clubs?

Thu, 12/08/2022 - 14:02

Welcoming players back from Qatar now may provide a crucial advantage when the hectic domestic schedule restarts

“If they all go out of the competition early and can train with us, that would be absolutely outstanding,” Jürgen Klopp joked of his Liverpool players before the World Cup. The German was lucky that just seven of his squad were called upon to travel to Qatar, although only Darwin Núñez has exited before the quarter-finals. The Uruguayan is one of 73 Premier League players no longer involved in the World Cup, leaving 61 in Qatar for their managers to worry about.

Many clubs have enjoyed warm-weather training and have played or are to play friendlies to prepare for the Premier League’s Boxing Day return. But most of this will be done without their World Cup players, which could make a difference when the competitive action begins.

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Manchester United have moved on from Cristiano Ronaldo, insists Erik ten Hag

Wed, 12/07/2022 - 12:07
  • Manager ‘looking to the future’ following forward’s messy exit
  • United next face Burnley in Carabao Cup on 21 December

Erik ten Hag insists Manchester United have moved on from Cristiano Ronaldo’s messy departure from the club last month.

Ten Hag was not willing to discuss the saga in depth when asked by the club’s in-house TV channel, MUTV, in an interview that was aired on Wednesday. Rather, the Dutchman insisted his focus was on the future as he looks to continue the rebuilding job at Old Trafford that he began when he arrived in the summer.

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Familiar faces and vibes: tournament life is a better fit for Harry Maguire | Jonathan Liew

Tue, 11/29/2022 - 07:30

After the bomb threat and loss of form at Manchester United, the England defender seems at ease on the international stage

Harry Maguire was just finishing a training session this year when he received an anonymous email, sent via his agent. The email explained that three bombs had been planted at his house in Wilmslow and that he was being given 72 hours to leave Manchester United before they would be detonated.

Naturally the police were called immediately, a sniffer dog was dispatched to conduct a thorough search of Maguire’s house and garden, and no explosives were found. Maguire rushed home from Carrington to be with his family, and while his fiancée and children were moved to a safehouse, Maguire moved in with a teammate for a few days. Nobody was arrested.

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'One of my idols': Marcus Rashford pays tribute to Cristiano Ronaldo – video

Sun, 11/27/2022 - 18:58

Marcus Rashford has said his former Manchester United teammate, Cristiano Ronaldo, is 'one of my idols' and to have had the experience of playing alongside him was 'unbelievable'. The England forward said of Ronaldo: 'He's someone I’ve always looked up to. So, to have the opportunity to play with him is unbelievable and you know I’ll take that with me and it’s something that I can keep with me forever.'

Manchester United announced this week that Ronaldo would leave the club with immediate effect, bringing to a bitter end his second spell at Old Trafford after he gave an explosive media interview, claiming he felt 'betrayed' by the club.

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Manchester United fans must wait: football’s biggest sale will take time

Sat, 11/26/2022 - 12:00

Cristiano Ronaldo is gone and the Glazers are going, but despite such seismic shifts selling Old Trafford will not be a quick deal

In the space of four hours and eight minutes on Tuesday, Manchester United put out two statements that will surely go down in the club’s history. First, the mutual termination of Cristiano Ronaldo’s contract was announced at 5.30pm and it was later confirmed the Glazer family were open to selling up. Most United fans welcomed the news. Their ageing prima donna was heading for the exit and there was renewed hope the unpopular American owners might pack up.

It had taken fewer than 10 days from Ronaldo’s melodramatic broadside at United, delivered via Piers Morgan’s knockabout questioning, to the No 7 shirt being vacated. Those in the firing line included the owners, coaches past and present and the club’s training facilities. There was no way back for Ronaldo, not that he wanted one. When his contract was ripped up, the club and player got what they desired.

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David Beckham and a Manchester United bid – what could go wrong? | Marina Hyde

Fri, 11/25/2022 - 15:47

There is no more elegant pivot than moaning about the World Cup in Qatar to begging a Gulf state to come and buy your club

“When I want a peerage,” sniffed Alfred Harmsworth (later Lord Northcliffe), “I shall buy one like an honest man.” So yes: I want to begin with an apology for a ridiculous statement in my most recent column, which held that David Beckham’s mega-lucrative Qatar promotional deal meant he has been “wearing the face of a man who knows he is never going to get his knighthood now”. This was obviously wrong. Having been paid a reported £150m for his work shilling for the Qatari regime, David is in fact even better placed to buy a knighthood than he was before, and could easily run to a peerage.

But could David also be involved in the purchase of something else? Namely, Manchester United football club, which you’ll have noted is back on the market after the adored Glazer family have finally decided to cash out of the club they bought with some debt back in 2005. Can you cash out of something you never put cash into? Amazingly, yes. High finance is magic, and I’ve got a huge amount of time for it.

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Money taking and bad decision-making: the Glazers' legacy at Manchester United – explainer video

Fri, 11/25/2022 - 08:20

The Guardian's John Brewin explains the lasting legacy of the Glazer family at Manchester United as they put the club up for sale after 17 years of ownership. The overall picture has been rather grim for fans, with bad management decisions, a lack of investment and the existence of the club as the Glazers' personal bank summarising their reign. For the Glazers, however, it was a very successful ownership with huge financial gains. 

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Saudi government would back private bids for Manchester United or Liverpool

Thu, 11/24/2022 - 20:15
  • Sports minister talks of strong interest in English clubs
  • Saudi Arabia may also place a bid to host a future World Cup

Prince Abdulaziz bin Turki Al Faisal, Saudi Arabia’s sports minister, has said his government would definitely support any private sector bids from the country for Manchester United or Liverpool.

While the Saudi Public Investment Fund backed the purchase of Newcastle United last winter, Prince Abdulaziz said private businesses in his country have a strong interest in English football’s most successful clubs, with both instructing banks regarding potential investment or sale.

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We love Brazilian skill, so why do we criticise their flair players so much?

Thu, 11/24/2022 - 08:00

Antony, Neymar, Richarlison and Lucas Paquetá have all been mocked or scolded for playing with panache and trickery

By Tom Sanderson for the Guardian Sport Network

The World Cup has finally started and, for some Brazil players, representing their national team may prove a welcome break from the day job. Manager Tite included 12 players from the Premier League in his 26-man squad – second only to England – and 22 in total from European clubs. Brazilian players have increasingly made home in Europe but their style is not always feted. At least once a month this season a young, skilful Brazilian has been criticised for doing what they do best: entertaining fans, expressing themselves and exhibiting their art.

Most recently, it was Antony’s turn to suffer a media pile-on in his adopted home. The São Paulo product was one of new Manchester United boss Erik ten Hag’s marquee signings in the summer. The Dutchman convinced the club to pay Ajax £82m – an Eredivisie record – for the 22-year-old. The forward has enjoyed a strong start in England, setting a record as the first United player to score in his first three Premier League games. He was generally well received by fans and the media. Until he did the unthinkable and tried to pull off a trick during a 3-0 win over Sheriff in the Europa League.

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