New Signings

Manchester United, as mentioned above, have only bought two players this summer so far.

And as most of us should know, the two players are Shinji Kagawa and Nick Powell.

Of the two, the former is surely expected to create a big impact at Old Trafford in the upcoming campaign. Kagawa will add the much-needed attacking prowess and impetus to United's team, which was lacking last season. The Japanese international was arguably Borussia Dortmund's best player in the 2011-12 campaign, scoring 17 times and producing 13 assists to lead the German club to a remarkable double.

Kagawa will most likely play in an attacking midfield role, or behind Wayne Rooney as the second striker. His blistering pace and quick passing abilities will allow his to orchestrate United's game well and produce timely assists for his attacking partners.

Hence, it is fair enough to say that Kagawa is without doubt a great signing for United and the Red Devils faithful won't be disappointed with the transfer of this Asian magician.

Coming to Nick Powell, it will be interesting to see how big an impact the 18-year-old will be able to make in his debut season. To be fair, due to his young age and inexperience to perform on the big stage, I don't see Powell getting much playing time this season.

Nonetheless, Powell still looks like an interesting signing. The promising star is a talented player and scored 16 goals in 45 games for Crewe Alexandra last season.

Personally, I see Powell more as a singing for the future rather than the present, but I do see playing some games for United this season and hopefully, impressing the fans and critics some excellent performances.

Departures

No 'big-name' player to talk about in this part. Fabio and J.S. Park have joined QPR on a season-long loan and a permanent transfer respectively.

Fabio has seen only limited playing time at Old Trafford over the past two to three seasons and a loan spell to Rangers will surely come in handy for the youngster. The Brazilian possesses immense talent and could virtually go on to replace Patrice Evra as United's first-choice left back in the future.

Park, on the other hand, was a fan favorite at the Theatre of Dreams, but his departure shouldn't really affect the Red Devils. The South Korean international could only muster 28 appearances for the Alex Ferguson's team last season and looked out of sorts in many games. However, he will be a valuable addition to Mark Hughes' side and could surely guarantee them another year in top-flight football.

Paul Pogba 'officially' transferred to Serie A club Juventus and Ezekiel Fryers could be heading to White Hart Lane in the next few weeks.

Even though the departure of the above mentioned two youngsters comes as a big blow to United, the pre-season has clearly showed us that there are many more talents like Davide Petrucci and Ryan Tunnicliffe coming up.

Tomasz Kuszczak and Michael Owen were released and it is overwhelmingly unlikely that either the fans or the team will miss the two in any manner.

Dimitar Berbatov has been heavily linked with a number of clubs like Milan, Galatasaray and Zenit St. Petersburg, but the club hasn't received any concrete offers for the Bulgarian yet. If Berbatov is able to find a new club and leaves the red side of Manchester, Ferguson will be letting go of an immensely creative player who is still good enough to produce the goods for the 19-time English champions and help them topple City this season.

Possible Transfers

With United's chief operating officer Michael Bolingbroke stating that the club's the spending could reach £40m this summer, it is quite clear that the Red Devils are still very much in the transfer market looking for some useful additions to their team.

Lucas Moura of Sao Paulo has been heavily linked with a big-money move to Old Trafford over the past few weeks and a deal for the youngster looks imminent according the latest reports. Yes, Sao Paulo have slapped a daunting price-tag of around £30m and Fergie is not quite famous for overspending on inexperienced players, but then football is full of surprises and I wouldn't be shocked to see Moura donning the famous red jersey from the upcoming campaign.

Robin van Persie, too, has been intensively linked with United, but the Dutchman's wage demands of £220,000 per week might put off the Reds.

Everton left-back Leighton Baines looks like another realistic target. The Englishman has been one of the most consistent full-backs in the Premier League over the past two seasons and due to Everton's feeble financial situation, Manchester United could snap up the 27-year-old for a relatively minimal fee of £15m.

With Fabio off on a season-long loan, Fryers heading for the exit door and Evra looking well past his prime, a left-back is a must for United and Baines looks like the most viable option.

IPO

As what one could say is a desperate way to raise funds, Manchester United's controversial owners, the Glazers, have decided to float the club on the New York stock exchange. The club has kicked off the marketing for its initial public offering, which will value the club at $3.3 billion if the sale is at the high end of the pricing range of $16-to-$20 per share.

However, according to the latest reports, it has been revealed that the Glazers plan to take half of the proceeds of the floatation. This stance by the American owners has come under heavy criticism as the latter had first promised to use all the funds to reduce the club's debts, which currently stand at £437m.

Duncan Drasdo, the chief executive of Manchester United Supporters Trust said: "In the original filing it was made absolutely clear that ALL of the proceeds of the IPO would go to paying down debt the Glazers have loaded onto Manchester United. The revised filing reveals they now plan to take half of the IPO proceeds for themselves. Furthermore the amount raised to pay down debt will be relatively insignificant (£75m) leaving £350m of their debt still on our club. There is now no doubt that this IPO is bad for Manchester United supporters, Manchester United Football Club and any investors gullible enough to pay the inflated price they've attached to inferior shares which have just 1/10 of the voting rights of the Glazers shares and no dividends. Their bare faced cheek is almost unbelievable."

Even though Alex Ferguson recently defended the owners, saying that they have provided him with 'full' support and trust, the plan to keep half of the flotation money could result in severe financial problems for the club. The Red Devils have a volatile and shaky financial situation and revenues could take a tumble if the club continues to under-perform in the upcoming campaigns.

Going public was seen as one of the last options to bring the debts to a less substantial level, but that hope, too, seems to fade away now. Moreover, it is not even likely that the club will actually go on to raise the expected £210m from the highly anticipated offerings due to several reasons.

First, the stakeholders will be only getting MINIMAL voting rights and no dividends. The final right to make all the decisions will still lie with the family. Hence, many 'die-hard' fans could be reluctant to invest in the most popular club in the world.

The only reason they might is in the hope that one day the Glazers are knocked off their perch and the club is bought by a wealthy sheikh or a billionaire who clears off all the debt and brings a new dawn to the Theatre of Dreams.

Conclusion

Manchester United's summer, one could say, has been relatively quiet and wet this time around. Some transfer activities are still needing be done and hopefully the club is able to squeeze out deals for Lucas Moura and possibly Leighton Baines.

Nonetheless, the fans and players are still raring to go for the 2012-13 season and one could surely bet on United to make a memorable comeback and bring in at least one major trophy this campaign.

Join the Discussion