Tuesday 20 February 2018

'The facts speak for themselves' - United hit back at Perez criticism of botched De Gea transfer

United say Spanish club should not point finger of blame at them over transfer's collapse on deadline day

Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea
Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea

Mark Ogden

Manchester United have dismissed Florentino Perez’s attempts to blame the club and executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward for the collapse of David de Gea’s transfer to Real Madrid by insisting that ‘culpability’ lies with the Spanish outfit.

The two clubs have engaged in a war of words since De Gea’s £29m move dramatically fell through on Monday evening due to an inability to submit necessary paperwork ahead of Monday’s midnight deadline for the Spanish transfer window.

Real president Perez hit out at United’s ‘inexperience’ - a thinly-veiled criticism of Woodward - and described the eight-hour wait for contractual documents as a ‘disgrace’ during a radio interview in Spain last night.

But United have now hit back at Perez’s comments by reiterating that they have the backing of the Football Association with their insistence that everything was done correctly at Old Trafford.

A Manchester United spokesman said, “The facts speak for themselves. The FA are prepared to back our case that documents were in on time.

“We all like to blame others but if you let one slip through your fingers into the back of the net, then ultimately the culpability is yours."

United and Real have endured a turbulent relationship in recent seasons, with former manager Sir Alex Ferguson hitting out at the Spaniards in 2008 over their pursuit of Cristiano Ronaldo by claiming he ‘wouldn’t sell that mob a virus.’

Ferguson eventually sanctioned Ronaldo’s world record £80m sale to Real in June 2009, but the two clubs have struggled to overcome the hostility generated by the Ronaldo saga.

Perez accused United of failing to complete a loan deal for defender Fabio Coentrao two years ago after running out of time on transfer deadline day in August 2013.

Real pulled the plug on the deal after failing to complete a move for Granada's Guilherme Siqueira prior to sanctioning Coentrao's departure.

And United have since been unable to persuade Perez to come to the table in efforts to lure Gareth Bale from the Bernabeu. The De Gea transfer failure has now reignited the row between the two clubs.


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