Manchester United made two radically different moves this weekend ahead of the transfer window closing. First, Old Trafford lent its reliable super substitute Javier “Chicharito” Hernandez to Real Madrid. Later, the team reportedly lined up a one-year deal worth roughly $40 million to land Colombian striker Radamel Falcao. The first move makes more sense than the latter. Let’s talk.
Chicharito is known for coming in as a substitute and shaking things up. He’s done it for years at Manchester United and did it again for Mexico during the World Cup. However, according to Fox Sports, “The Mexico international has grown increasingly frustrated at a lack of first-team opportunities at Old Trafford,” which is why he began to eye other teams.
The move will likely not put Chicharito, a striker, in the starting 11 right away. But since Real’s team structure is different from Man. U.’s, it’s likely Chicharito will have more chances to work up to a starting spot in the future. And with the Man. U. loan including an option to place the player on Real permanently, this may be the plan. Per Bleacher Report:
Madrid need[s] striking cover. [Karim] Benzema is their only genuine out-and-out striker after the sale of Alvaro Morata, so Hernandez will give them a decent option off the bench. The move will provide him with the opportunity to re-establish both his club and his national career.
While all this was going on, Manchester United was reportedly opening up its wallet to entice Colombian striker Radamel Falcao to play at Old Trafford for a year. The move surprised many, as the squad runs deep on strikers and seems to need more midfielders. Falcao is a striker through-and-through, who will have to find his way amid the likes of Robin van Persie, Wayne Rooney and Juan Mata. It’s got many asking what new manager Louis van Gaal is thinking. Per the Daily Mail:
Louis van Gaal appears to have ignored the desperate pleas of Manchester United fans to strengthen his central defence and midfield in favour of bringing Radamel Falcao to Old Trafford. … [H]ow about senior forwards Wayne Rooney and Robin van Persie? And where does former club record signing Juan Mata now stand? The challenge now facing United’s manager is fitting that talented quartet on the same pitch in a system that he not only likes, but which brings the best out of each individual.
The Telegraph’s Paul Hayward goes even further, saying outright that he thinks Falcao’s signing was a bad move.
“United just want to be able to show to the world that they can assemble players of that kind of calibre,” Hayward says. “Falcao may just confuse things, and with his injury record, he might be in and out of the side.”
Despite the trepidation about where Falcao will fit in, many are still trying to grasp the monetary aspect of this loan. Manchester United will pay Falcao the same as his Monaco deal, which nets him £346 million (roughly $574,000) per week, the Telegraph reports. The team has yet to confirm the salary, but if true, that would make Falcao the highest weekly earner in the Premier League.
£346,000 per week. THREE HUNDRED & FORTY-SIX THOUSAND. Think about that for a moment. I would have LOVED Falcao, but that’s just ridiculous.
— FK (@fkhanage) September 1, 2014
Falcao’s Wage at Man Utd. Per Year: £17,992,000 Per Month: £1,499,333 Per Week: £346,000 Per Day: £49,428 Per Hour: £2,059 Per Sec: £34.31 — Kamran (@BarcaAnalysis) September 1, 2014
BREAKING: Wayne Rooney hands in a transfer request after hearing Radamel Falcao will earn £346,000 a week.
— SPORT Humour (@SportHumour) September 1, 2014