United complete surprise deal for Dutchman Buttner
In a move which has been completed very much under wraps and away from the media spotlight, Alexander Buttner has joined Manchester United on a five-year contract for a fee in the region of £4 million.
United, who had been looking for cover for Patrice Evra throughout the summer transfer window, moved quickly to complete the deal after Southampton failed to finalise a move that had looked likely up until there was some disagreement concerning third party payments.
Sir Alex Ferguson was clearly delighted after capturing Buttner from Vitesse Arnhem, boldly stating that “Alexander is one of the best young left-backs in Europe and we’re delighted to sign him. He’s someone we’ve been watching for a while now. He gives us some really exciting options in that position.”
With United fans perhaps expecting a more high profile signing, such as the previously targeted Leighton Baines, Buttner has moved to Old Trafford with much to prove.
Having been part of the preliminary Dutch squad for Euro 2012, he failed to make the cut in a team that looked to seventeen year old Jetro Willems as an alternative in the left-back slot. Further trepidation was caused when United scout Ed van Stijn proclaimed that Buttner was ‘only 3rd or 4th best left-back in Holland.’
Despite this, a seemingly confident Buttner has declared his willingness to be a success at United stating “It’s a team I have admired for many years now and I can’t wait to join my team-mates and play my part in helping the club be successful.”
United have also secured the services of eighteen year old Angelo Henriquez from Universidad de Chile, after the striker was granted a work permit, having completed his medical last week.
James Fuller, football correspondent