Manchester United breaks British record to pay $99 million transfer fee to Real Madrid for Angel di Maria


Angel di Maria plays one of his last matches with Real Madrid. (Daniel Ochoa de Olza/AP)

It’s official. After much speculation, Manchester United announced the team has acquired star Real Madrid winger Angel di Maria for a British record transfer fee of roughly $99 million, the BBC reports via Twitter.

News broke of the possible high number over the weekend and was confirmed Monday by several news outlets. Previously, the highest transfer fee ever paid by a British team was for striker Fernando Torres, whom Chelsea scooped up from Liverpool for roughly $80 million in 2011, according to ESPN.

While di Maria is unarguably a great addition to the team, some analysts have asserted that Man U is overpaying for the Argentine national, including the Daily Mirror’s Darren Lewis, who tweeted before the fee was confirmed this morning.

Others, however, believe the record-breaking fee is a cost the Premier League team can handle. Nick Miller of Bleacher Report writes:

“[T]he fee shouldn’t be something any United fan should worry about. Manchester United are a moneymaking machine, something that can been seen through the sheer number of their official ‘commercial partners.’ Their latest financial statement revealed record revenues of £115.5 million [roughly $191.5 million] for the three months to March this year, as reported by Sky Sports, and even despite the lack of European competition this year, that figure is unlikely to fall.”

Miller also points out the proposed record Adidas kit deal that has the potential to earn the team $1 billion over the course of a decade.

As for di Maria, he’s going to come out all right in this deal, too. According to the Daily Mail, he’ll be pulling in more than $330,000 per week, a salary that’s second only to captain Wayne Rooney’s.

Marissa Payne writes for The Early Lead, a fast-breaking sports blog, where she focuses on what she calls the “cultural anthropological” side of sports, aka “mostly the fun stuff.” She is also an avid WWE fan.

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Marissa Payne · August 25, 2014