The sales pitch: how would you convince prospective signings to come here and want to be here?

fastwalker

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I am old enough to remember a time when Manchester United was an absolute destination for top talent. Players wanted to come and the prestige of the badge and assurance of silverware were often more than enough attract them from both home and abroad. No, we weren't always successful in our pursuits, but we were more successful than not.

Fast forward to 2022. United remain a global brand, able to pay the best wages in the Premier League. There is also the enormous latent potential of a club that is essentially a sleeping giant. On the flip side however, over the years we have allowed ourselves to become a basket case. Poor governance at board level, ill-judged player recruitment, a merry-go-round of managers and rebuild after rebuild that has created an image of a club in a state of perpetual 'drift'.

Watching a recent interview, Frenkie de Jong seemed less than enthusiastic about the prospect of joining United. This is astonishing considering the fact that he would be reuniting with a manager who developed him and whom he knows well. Similar uncertainty may also surround another United transfer target, Jurrien Timber.

Going into the summer transfer window and predicated on the above factors, how would you convince players to want to come here and be here? Given all that has gone before, what would be your pitch? How do you counter-message against the negative press?
 
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clarkydaz

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A new generation of young players dont remember us being a prestigous club. We have been a laughing stock for nigh on a decade and cannot even guarentee CL football to top players nowadays
 

Tarrou

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it's not really astonishing that he played it down

it's called media training, they are told to do that
 

Jippy

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I am old enough to remember a time when Manchester United was an absolute destination for top talent. Players wanted to come and the prestige of the badge and assurance of silverware were often more than enough attract them from both home and abroad. No, we weren't always successful in our pursuits, but we were more successful than not.

Fast forward to 2022. United remain a global brand, able to pay the best wages in the Premier League. There is also the enormous latent potential of a club that is essentially a sleeping giant. On the flip side however, over the years we have allowed ourselves to become a basket case. Poor governance at board level, ill-judged player recruitment, a merry-go-round of managers and rebuild after rebuild that has created an image of a club in a state of perpetual 'drift'.

Watching a recent interview, Frenkie de Jong seemed less that enthusiastic about the prospect of joining United. This is astonishing considering the fact that he would be reuniting with a manager who developed him and whom he knows well. Similar uncertainty may also surround another United transfer target, Jurrien Timber.

Going into the summer transfer window and predicated on the above factors, how would you convince players to want to come here and be here? Given all that has gone before, what would be your pitch? How do you counter-message against the negative press?
So you're 15?
 

MyOnlySolskjaer

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Considering the status of the club, it's a missed opportunity not to have a proper club representative to speak to these players as a liaison during the transfer. The amount of transfers Madrid stole from us just from having Zidane to personally meet players and speak to them was telling. With signing Ronaldo, you could actually see the ex-players that were pretty good at this.

With so many "club ambassadors" and legends, let's actually make them do their job? It's really a missed opportunity. For example, if someone passionate like Rio or Evra was to be the transfer liaison for Jude Bellingham, it would make a world of a difference than speaking to fecking Arnold or Murtough.
 

Bilbo

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Far too much is made of our supposed lack of pull. We've just had our worst season in decades, with no CL football to offer, and yet it still seems highly likely that we will sign De Jong, a player who would be totally out of reach for most other clubs.

His reluctance to move is not about United. He is happy at the club he plays for and the city he lives in. Its completely understandable that he'd need some convincing to move away from that.
 

TheReligion

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A new generation of young players dont remember us being a prestigous club. We have been a laughing stock for nigh on a decade and cannot even guarentee CL football to top players nowadays
So the question is what you’d do?

Unless you missed the massive feck off bold lettering of the title.
 

rimaldo

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we need a way of appealing to the youth of today. we’re trying to attract talented youngsters with techniques from the 1950s. look at our out of touch ceo, sinking pints at the boozer trying to win over fans. youngsters nowadays don’t like the pub or alcohol. he should have taken them to an organic juice bar, sushi restaurant or silent disco.
 

Red Rash

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I really hate to say this as I remember when most of the top players wanted to join United but we have fallen so much from that time period that the way to pitch to the players why they should join may not be aligned with what the fans want. Anyway I would say :

  • Opportunity to join the rebuild to bring United back to the top
  • Chance to work with one of the top managers in world football
  • Higher salary than they would likely receive from almost any other club
  • Huge marketing opportunity for the players to grow their brand
I really don't like the points in bold but I really think we have to be realistic and this will play a huge part in players joining
 

Skills

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Pro : the money

Con: the fanbase.
 

JPRouve

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Most of the players didn't want to join United which is why United don't have an history of signing the top players, in fact we have an history of missing them for various reasons. We have an history of signing good and very good functional players that aren't the top talents but would play like it under SAF.

As for the sales pitch, there isn't one. What you say to a player depends on the player's situation.
 

TwoSheds

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  • Manager (we can claim he's world class until we've shown whether we can ruin him or not)
  • Ronaldo - particularly for young attackers, "learn from the best"
  • Fergie, ex-players - we ought to send them out to make the case to anyone who needs persuading
  • New CEO, football structure, investment plans, clear out, exciting project. If we really can't sell that this summer then I don't know when we'll be able to.
  • We don't need to actually say or do anything for this but the remuneration will speak for itself for most players, particularly if we're targeting young ish ones with a point to prove like we should be.
  • We should absolutely 1000% not mention fecking branding or social media. If they're bright they'll work it out themselves, if not their agent will. But we should never acknowledge that it's important for us, makes us come across as unserious as a football club. Which we have been for years of course, but that needs to change.
 

Abraxas

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You say that De Jong's reluctance is "astonishing", I would argue it is not astonishing that he would need to consider the move. He's at Barcelona not Alaves. It is probably one of the romantic destinations in world football for a technical midfield player, is on fantastic money and living in a great part of the world. That is why it is not trivial and some encouragement may be needed.

It doesn't mean that this blackhole of pessimism that surrounds our fanbase extends to the disposition of every potential signing. We have a bunch of people that get so attached to dubious news stories and follow every twist and turn that they're easy to convince for media outlets that know what generates views. Everything is seen through a negative prism at the moment, which is understandable. But if you tell them that negotiations are ongoing it seems quite boring compared to this world where our transfers are all rejecting us.

I don't think we require an elaborate masterplan to convince players. It will be the usual thing, they will be convinced by the money, the connotations of playing for Man Utd and by whatever the manager says. The manager always speaks to players to tell them how they'll fit in and how great they are and we have a pretty exciting manager.
 

TheReligion

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I'd listen to what Ralf said, go for young players looking to prove themselves. The short term overpaid superstar hasnt worked for us and we cant recover from them. Yet we're going after a player ballsdeep who doesnt really want to be here again
No the question is what would you sales pitch be to attract new players?
 

Chairman Steve

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Spain smells funny
London is full of tories
Paris is pretty scummy
So sign at United
And let’s make stories
 

Roane

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Im not trying to be contrary but is the pull we had at UTD not a tad over played?
 

DanielofLeyland

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Players are human beings. If we want to convince them to sign for Manchester United we need to treat them as such. This might seem obvious but we always assume that players only want mega-money and to be elevated to Overlord of the team within the first 3 months.

Whenever anybody works for a business they apply and take the job (and stay even if there are better offers) because of the culture. How many people turn down promotions because they think of their current place of employment as being comfortable due to friendships and being respected?

Our coaching team should be heavily involved in selling their culture to the players we are interested in and we offer higher wages and seniority for hard work, determination and teamwork. This should be the case throughout the club from the youth level up to the senior level.

It might seem obvious and common sense (and perhaps the club do this anyway) but with the players, we have had in recent years and the money we have spent on wages I suspect that money has been the key driver to signing anybody. This only appeals to players with aspirations to earn as much as possible and then retire a rich man. That's fine but it doesn't help build a culture. Look at Liverpool, full of superstars but they don't break the bank with wages.
 

11101

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It's massively overplayed. We're still one of the 3 biggest names in football, we have the biggest ground in the best league, and we're not exactly relegation fodder. After Madrid's name and City's $$$ we're as appealing as any. Do Barcelona struggle to recruit because they're now shit too? Coming here to play alongside a five time Ballon D'or winner shouldn't require a gun to the head.
 

m1tch

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I really hate to say this as I remember when most of the top players wanted to join United but we have fallen so much from that time period that the way to pitch to the players why they should join may not be aligned with what the fans want. Anyway I would say :

  • Opportunity to join the rebuild to bring United back to the top
  • Chance to work with one of the top managers in world football
  • Higher salary than they would likely receive from almost any other club
  • Huge marketing opportunity for the players to grow their brand
I really don't like the points in bold but I really think we have to be realistic and this will play a huge part in players joining
Yes it's unfortunate but our fall from what we were is complete. If it was 3 years since our last title win then things would be different. We're not even a constant presence in the champions league anymore. We are like AC Milan were until very recently essentially.

To return to the top our signings will have to be echoing what Man City's signings used to say "I'm coming here as I'm excited by the project". This is code for, great financial offer and promises that money is no object in reaching our objectives. Unfortunately for us the latter isn't true.
 

Stobzilla

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I am old enough to remember a time when Manchester United was an absolute destination for top talent. Players wanted to come and the prestige of the badge and assurance of silverware were often more than enough attract them from both home and abroad. No, we weren't always successful in our pursuits, but we were more successful than not.

Fast forward to 2022. United remain a global brand, able to pay the best wages in the Premier League. There is also the enormous latent potential of a club that is essentially a sleeping giant. On the flip side however, over the years we have allowed ourselves to become a basket case. Poor governance at board level, ill-judged player recruitment, a merry-go-round of managers and rebuild after rebuild that has created an image of a club in a state of perpetual 'drift'.

Watching a recent interview, Frenkie de Jong seemed less than enthusiastic about the prospect of joining United. This is astonishing considering the fact that he would be reuniting with a manager who developed him and whom he knows well. Similar uncertainty may also surround another United transfer target, Jurrien Timber.

Going into the summer transfer window and predicated on the above factors, how would you convince players to want to come here and be here? Given all that has gone before, what would be your pitch? How do you counter-message against the negative press?
Hello, this is Manchester United.

Stop being a cnut and sign. Also, don't be a cnut.
 

Deery

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We need to step away from the Instagram nature of the club and become a serious football club again.

But, I think people can see the Glazers are halfhearted about everything so not much will change.
 
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Von Mistelroum

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Honestly there isn't a way to do this at present. Our prestige has been tainted beyond just being seen as a lesser club, but as a banter club, the butt of the joke etc.

We can't offer CL football. We can't say we're likely to challenge for honours or even for the top 4 anytime soon and players now know that we don't have money either, so they won't see the future as being too bright in terms of real change. I think we're trying not to go too crazy with wages, but that would seem like the only real draw we could potentially have to lure top players who have other big clubs after them. If only we were based in Paris or even London
 

AFC NimbleThumb

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The problem is we’re still trying to sign FdJ from Barcelona instead of charming ‘the next FdJ of an Ajax’.

I had a discussion with a Pool fan the other day about how had you given Mo Salah or Mane the opportunity to join a Bayern Munich or Liverpool at the time of signing they’d have chosen Bayern no question [he was waffling about Bayern being a step down for Mane].

The issue isn’t that players won’t join us, the issue remains we won’t take a step back to take a step forward. To become a no questions asked destination again we need to show we can make players better simply from joining, if you’re FdJ & look at a Sancho or a Pogba why would you think there’s a culture at the club that will foster any development.

We’re shopping in the wrong market.
 

clarkydaz

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so why would they chose you over, say, Dortmund
At this point im putting most of it recruiting a modern manager with a plan on how to play. Dortmund is a good expample as we couldnt convince Haaland or Bellingham to come recently, despite having the wage, league,status, fame. I assume we need enticing player development
 

Roane

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For me the problem the club has isn't about money or prestige. I think we have both of these in abundance.

The problem we have is one of club culture since even SAFs last few years. But magnified since.
 

Sky1981

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I am old enough to remember a time when Manchester United was an absolute destination for top talent. Players wanted to come and the prestige of the badge and assurance of silverware were often more than enough attract them from both home and abroad. No, we weren't always successful in our pursuits, but we were more successful than not.

Fast forward to 2022. United remain a global brand, able to pay the best wages in the Premier League. There is also the enormous latent potential of a club that is essentially a sleeping giant. On the flip side however, over the years we have allowed ourselves to become a basket case. Poor governance at board level, ill-judged player recruitment, a merry-go-round of managers and rebuild after rebuild that has created an image of a club in a state of perpetual 'drift'.

Watching a recent interview, Frenkie de Jong seemed less than enthusiastic about the prospect of joining United. This is astonishing considering the fact that he would be reuniting with a manager who developed him and whom he knows well. Similar uncertainty may also surround another United transfer target, Jurrien Timber.

Going into the summer transfer window and predicated on the above factors, how would you convince players to want to come here and be here? Given all that has gone before, what would be your pitch? How do you counter-message against the negative press?
So what. If you're at google and that supervisor that guide you and made you what you are today asking you to join him at Yahoo. Would you follow him?
 

Redlyn

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We pay lots of money, about double your actual worth. Nuff said.
 

Tallis

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We signed Sancho, Varane and Ronaldo last year. We are obviously not in the kind of dumps where no one would ever want to sign for us.

We just need to find a way to get back in the CL - that means more money for players and easier to convince them to sign
 

spottieottiedopaliscious

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I’d grab them by the hand and…


A whole new world (a whole new world)
A new fantastic point of view
No one to tell us, "No"
Or where to go
Or say we're only dreaming
A whole new world (every turn, a surprise)
With new horizons to pursue (every moment, red-letter)
I'll chase them anywhere, there's time to spare
And then we're home (there's time to spare)
Let me share this whole new world with you
A whole new world (a whole new world)
That's where we'll be (that's where we'll be)
A thrilling chase (a wondrous place)
For you and me
 

Zen86

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99% of players either want money or want success. Usually the former outweighs the latter.
 

Tap

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Pro : the money

Con: the fanbase.
i’d say both are pros from the player’s pov, given that the fanbase has a high degree of sentimentality and acceptance of mediocrity. We are actually a dream club for players wanting a good life without the expectation and pressure to win trophies.
 
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