100 million euros for Anthony? Manchester United lost the plot

Anthony, Man United, 2022/23

Manchester United have made some dodgy transfers in the past decade, but spending €100m on Anthony simply defies logic.

Astronomical fees are a symptom of a club looking to support its manager, but his manager also plays dual roles in recruiting and coaching this team.

€100m for a player whose achievements at a level such as the Eredivisie were as fleeting as they were mediocre – eight goals and four assists domestically – he simply shouldn’t have been paid such a colossal wage.

It is clear and obvious that when the Premier League is looking for a player, there is a premium that is charged to him immediately. European clubs are under no illusion that the money available in England means they are happy to overpay for their goal.

And when you add Manchester United to the squad, including their status, you can expect to add another bonus.

And when you have a former coach, Eric Ten Hag, who actually raided the club once this summer, the fees paid must reach absolutely absurd proportions.

Ajax admitted as such throughout the process, that he would have to take a “stupid” offer to force them to sell, and it has arrived.

Manchester United are giving them €167m for players with limited experience at the top level who literally can’t believe their luck.

FootballTransfers is currently worth €27 million. Our ratings are based on a number of factors, including domestic league performance, continental experience, international experience, and fee ratings for players of the same level.

We rate Anthony as having the potential to be a key player for a team at a higher level than the Eredivisie, and that may still be the case, but Manchester United will have to pay to find out.

If he performs at a high level right from the start, the relative size of the fee may be quickly forgotten, but if not, it may act as a millstone around the neck of the young striker.


Anthony has a lot of upside and obviously pushed Ajax hard to secure the move. But given the issues going on off the field at Old Trafford as they scramble to create a new overarching structure, there is a sense that exploration has been abandoned rather than players who can trust Tin Hag.

He followed a tried-and-tested technique with Lisandro Martinez and also Tyrell Malacia from the same department. Ten Hag appears to be in a position to bring together like-minded and trustworthy players that he could use to break the pattern at United.

This, in and of itself, isn’t a bad idea at all, and can come in handy while the rest of the team gets together. But he is penalizing huge expenses in order to get to this position in a position that United can live with.

Anthony: How can Manchester United get the best out of it

Despite the addition of Casemiro, they still lacked a midfield, and still lacked a central attacking centre, given Cristiano Ronaldo’s saga. At right-back, Diogo Dalot still looks like a somewhat temporary solution, while David de Gea is not the long-term solution in goal.

So Anthony, good player. It might be great. But €100m puts him among the absolute elite of transfers in history – he shouldn’t be anywhere near that position at this point in his journey.

Via www.footballtransfers.com

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