'Man Utd could write a book on how not to do transfers' – Fowler rips into Red Devils as Liverpool close on Nunez

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Darwin Nunez Man Utd GFXGetty / GOAL

Liverpool appear set to win the race for Benfica striker Darwin Nunez, with GOAL confirming the Reds are confident of beating arch-rivals Manchester United to a £75 million ($94m) deal.

Robbie Fowler has taken great delight in pointing out that the Red Devils “could write a book on how not to do transfers”.

Those at Old Trafford appear set to be left empty-handed in the pursuit of the highly-rated Uruguay international who scored 34 goals for Portuguese heavyweights last season.

Have Liverpool shown Man Utd how to do business?

Man Utd missed out on a top-four finish again during the 2021-22 campaign, and former Reds striker Fowler believes lessons from Merseyside need to be heeded by those in Manchester.

Fowler told The Mirror: “With the record signing of Darwin Nunez looking all but done for Liverpool, what fascinates me is the presence of Manchester United amid the negotiations.

“I can guarantee the Anfield people would have been uneasy with that, as it has the potential to push up not only the price, but the wages too. No agent worth his salt wouldn’t use it to get a bigger contract, let’s be clear.

“Man Utd being there in the background - for me - highlights just why this could so easily be another masterstroke for Liverpool in the transfer market, and it’s a point that is so often overlooked in the desperation to see new faces, new signings, new excitement.

“I don’t want to be cruel, but Man Utd could have written a book on how not to do transfers in recent seasons. Signing players just because you don’t want them to go to a rival? Check and double check.

“Cristiano [Ronaldo] has done his job well enough, but signing him because he could have gone to Man City? That just had disaster written all over it. The same with Alexis Sanchez. No, not the same, 10 times worse.

“That deal highlights everything that has been wrong at Old Trafford. How much did it cost? About 500 grand a week in wages, which I saw somewhere cost them about 20 million quid a goal!

“Much, much worse though, was that it didn’t just break Man Utd's pay structure, it shattered it. That’s how a goalkeeper [David de Gea] can end up on £400,000 a week, and a midfielder like [Paul] Pogba who couldn’t even get in the team half the time on even more.”

Is signing Nunez another masterstroke by Liverpool?

The Reds are moving for Nunez, having already snapped up Colombian winger Luis Diaz in January, as questions continue to be asked of how long Sadio Mane and Mohamed Salah will be at Anfield.

The Senegalese star continues to see a summer move to Bayern Munich speculated, while the Egyptian talisman is yet to extend a contract that is due to expire in 2023.

Fowler added on Liverpool moving to bring in reinforcements: “You can see the thinking with Darwin Nunez. Mane is 30, he’s 22. Selling Mane could raise around £40m, and Nunez cost £80m. But. And this is a significant but...

“He’ll most likely be on less than half the wages Mane was asking for. Which over the course of a five year contract could save them all of that extra £40m. On top of that, it doesn’t break the wage structure.

“Looking at it that way, replacing a 30 year old with a 22 year old whilst keeping your financial house in order is a bloody good win for Liverpool, and it’s something Man Utd must follow.”

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