8 signings you should make for Man Utd in Football Manager 2022
Even the most optimistic Manchester United fan can admit that this has not been the season they were expecting.
Locked in yet another battle for the top four, misfiring in front of goal and all that after club legend Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was sacked earlier in the season.
The squad seems to have some serious issues, bereft of a tactical identity and with some notable gaps across the team. Some of the best managers of the modern era have tried to sort out United, but all have struggled.
Yet thankfully if you’re a United fan or just a neutral who fancies their chances, Football Manager 2022 offers an opportunity to try and rebuild Manchester United, *cough* sorry, ‘Manchester UFC’ *cough*, in your own image.
We’ve tried our hand at picking eight signings for the first summer transfer window that we think could help you restore Manchester United to glory.
We’ve tried to stick to the financial limitations you’ll have in the first season while also going for signings that steer away from the usual big names (so no Declan Rice here).
There should also be a good mix of starters, squad players, and ones for the future.
So here are the eight best Manchester United signings you should make in your first window in Football Manager.
No, this article is not from 10 years ago when Carvalho was a wonderkid.
It’s no secret that defensive midfield is United’s biggest problem at the moment, and we’ve opted for a name outside of the usual suspects.
Carvalho has all the stats you need to be the perfect holding midfielder in your United team that will allow you to release the attacking potential of Paul Pogba and Bruno Fernandes.
18 strength, 17 positioning, 16 tackling, 15 passing and a whole host of other, well-rounded numbers make the 29-year-old ideal for your side for at least two seasons.
United love a Portuguese-speaking player too, so he should fit in well with the squad’s dynamics.
He’s more than affordable: using instalments and other clauses you can get the initial payment well below £20million, and his wages shouldn’t get close to breaking £100,000.
Ghanian Mumin is a perfect candidate for a United centre-back, affordable and outside of the big names.
Mumin plays for Portuguese side Vitoria and is still just 23, but can more than do a job as a squad player and future starter.
He stands at 6″2, has excellent passing, good physical stats and good mental stats too.
All that for a player it shouldn’t cost you any more than £10million initially to buy, who should be able to be sold for a good profit in the future if players like Teden Mengi come through.
United need a young, pacy, clinical striker as a matter of urgency.
Yet more importantly than that, when they let Edison Cavani go they’ll need a replacement for the Uruguayan’s glorious hair as well.
In all of those categories, no one fits the bill more than Darwin Nunez.
Ok we lied, his hair isn’t yet quite as glorious as Cavani’s but the Benfica star is shining in real life and there have been some tentative early links to United as well.
The Uruguay international stands at 6″2 and has 15 strength, yet is also rapid with 17 acceleration and 16 pace.
His technical and mental stats are similarly dazzling and you should be able to get a deal with an initial payment of only about £20million.
Sign him and watch as he gradually takes Ronaldo’s place in the side.
— Liga de Campeones (@LigadeCampeones) February 28, 2022
His name may sound like a type of pasta, but you won’t find Calegari in Italy.
The Brazilian right-back is an ideal signing to allow you to move on one of Diogo Dalot and Aaron Wan-Bisakka.
At 20-years-old he’s the first proper wonderkid on this list, boasting a brilliant range of well-rounded stats that could rise quickly with some experience at the highest level.
Plus he’s cheap. He currently plays for Fluminense and, with a sell-on clause and minor add-ons, we managed to get a deal done for £7.5million and with his wage at only around £15,000.
Note: you’ll probably have to have the Brazilian league loaded as view-only or South American major clubs selected in the database settings when making a new save to grab Calegari.
From a South American wonderkid to a European one.
Who doesn’t love a utility player? They’re majestic and rare beasts capable of solving all of your squad issues.
Ajax’s Timber looks to be one, with the Dutchman a natural as a right-back, centre-back, and holding midfielder.
There’s a good reason for that too. At 18 he has an unbelievably balanced set of attributes across his mentals, physicals, and technicals.
14 passing, 13 tackling, 13 positioning, 13 composure, and not a single physical stats below his 12 strength.
One for the future, but also capable of doing a job now. Sign him for around an initial £20million, which you can make lower with some creative accounting.
Jurrien Timber is so god damn good. Special player. pic.twitter.com/Hc6KwivJc0
— Marc Geschwind (@MarcGeschwind) January 23, 2022
In a complete departure from wonderkids, Tolic offers a cheap, squad player option that screams of a cult hero waiting to be found.
The 25-year-old Dinamo Zagreb player is a perfect rotation option as an attacking midfielder whether in the No.8 or No.10 roles. He won’t break the bank, either.
16 passing, 18 flair and 17 dribbling are his standout stats. His physicals are the only thing that prevents him from going up a level as a player, but create some space for him and he could do you wonders.
You can get him for less than a million, and if nothing else you’ll be able to sell him for a profit in two seasons.
Oh, he’s 6″3 to, because of course he is.
With managing a big club in Football Manager a lot of the time the task can be finding players for the first team who can grow themselves but won’t get in the way if any of your wonderkids start to get really rather good.
Elmas offers exactly that.
At 21 the North Macedonian is an exciting prospect in his own right and presents a perfect option either as a starter or as rotation across a variety of midfield positions or on the wing.
Yet if one of your youth players, we’re thinking of Hannibal Mejbri particularly here, starts to rapidly develop then Elmas will be quite happy to play second fiddle.
Another issue United have had in recent years is selling players on for a profit, and a player like Elmas has plenty of re-sale value.
We’ve imagined him as a sort of Pogba replacement if you decide to cash in on the France international or let him go the following summer.
With 17 passing as his standout stat, he’s well worth a look and should be available for around £20million.
Eljif Elmas with a brilliant individual effort! 🙌
A fantastic goal for Napoli 🔵 pic.twitter.com/zGXJultdN8
— Premier Sports (@PremierSportsTV) January 31, 2021
Another wonderkid, and our only English player.
We’ve mentioned Edwards before in our XI of the best English wonderkids in FM22 so we won’t go into details here but all you need to know is he’s a cheap, two-footed centre-back who screams future captain material.
At 18, he’s an exceptional pick-up for the future. Sign him.
By Patrick Ryan