Man Utd: Neville questions ‘panic’ buy as Amrabat comes in to solve ‘massive’ Ten Hag ‘problem’

Jason Soutar
Manchester United legend Gary Neville rates the signings of Sofyan Amrabat and Sergio Reguilon.
Manchester United legend Gary Neville rates the signings of Sofyan Amrabat and Sergio Reguilon.

Gary Neville is not convinced by Manchester United’s signing of Spanish left-back Sergio Reguilon.

Reguilon joined the Red Devils from Tottenham on loan with Luke Shaw and Tyrell Malacia both out injured.

The 26-year-old failed to impress on loan at Atletico Madrid last season after falling down the pecking order in north London and has been brought in by Erik ten Hag as a stop-gap.

Unless he does extremely well under Ten Hag or Shaw and/or Malacia’s injury problems persist, Reguilon’s time at Old Trafford is expected to come to an end in January.

It is clear this is a signing the Dutch manager did not want to make and ex-United right-back Neville thinks the loan acquisition was done in a “panic”.

“The Reguilon one is definitely a reaction to the situation that has occurred – it is more of a panic,” he told Sky Sports.

Neville added that he was “worried” by the Red Devils’ summer transfer business with their performances to start the season not easing his worries.

“I was worried (three weeks ago) that the [Mason] Mount, [Andre] Onana and [Rasmus] Hojlund signings hadn’t made United any better and if anything, they have just maintained where they are at,” he continued.

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“I think what we have seen in the first couple of weeks is a little bit worrying because the performance levels have been well below what I would expect.

“Nowhere near Manchester City, I don’t think any United fan is expecting that, but what we wanted was to get closer to Arsenal and make sure we stay above Chelsea, Liverpool and all the other clubs. That’s the issue at the moment.

“I think we will get better but I am a little bit more worried than I was a few weeks ago, but I was never bought into this idea that we were better – I said that a few weeks ago.”

Ten Hag was initially interested in signing Chelsea left-back Marc Cucurella on loan before getting Reguilon through the door on deadline day.

The Spaniard was not the only signing made on Friday, with Moroccan international Sofyan Amrabat finally completing his switch from Fiorentina.

United will pay an £8.5million loan fee and have the option to make the signing permanent for around £21m next summer.

Neville does not believe his former club panicked to sign Amrabat and thinks the 27-year-old can help solve “a massive problem” in Ten Hag’s midfield.

“No I don’t think the Amrabat one is a panic because they have wanted him from day one,” Neville added.

“I think he’s [Ten Hag] wanted a ball-playing midfield player. Go back 12 months to Frenkie De Jong and basically Mount isn’t a ball-playing midfielder, I think he presses well, I think he links well, I think he runs forward

“I think he has always wanted this type of player. I don’t think it’s a panic, Erik ten Hag wants a player like this and I just don’t know why it hasn’t happened earlier, obviously the other signings were brought in earlier in the summer and there has been an issue with players going out.

“The way this season has started, the performance levels have been poor and I know they have picked up six points but it could have easily been a lot less than six points.

“Wolves and [Nottingham] Forest games they were very fortunate, so I think they have to react and get someone in because that midfield is a massive problem.”

READ MORE: All the Premier League completed transfers in the summer window of 2023