Gary Neville has expressed strong opinions about the club’s acquisition of Casemiro, stating that the move “should have never gone through” and that there “should have been a veto” on it.
The Brazilian star made a switch from Real Madrid to Manchester United in the 2022 summer transfer window, a move that reportedly cost around £70m.
In his debut season, Casemiro was an integral part of Erik ten Hag’s successful start at Old Trafford, contributing to the team’s journey to the FA Cup final, securing the League Cup, and achieving a top-four spot in the Premier League.
Despite these achievements, Casemiro’s performance this season has been less impressive. In his 12 appearances across all competitions, his impact has been limited, partly due to injury issues.
The 31-year-old midfielder, who has been sidelined since Manchester United’s League Cup loss to Newcastle, is back in training following recovery from a hamstring injury.
He is anticipated to possibly return for the upcoming match against Tottenham.
Neville, however, is of the view that Manchester United made a significant error in signing Casemiro, particularly at his age of 30.
He believes that a decision like this should have been blocked by someone within the club’s management.
Neville told the Stick to Football podcast: “Coming in from an owner’s perspective, you employ a head of recruitment who you think is the best guy out there at spotting talent, that will bring value to your club. You’ve got a sporting director equally, who will be thinking the same way – their loyalty is to the club and to make sure we win games.
“A manager’s job is purely to think about the immediate short term and getting results for himself. Casemiro is perfect example of a short-term signing that is going to cost in the long term.
“That signing never should have gone through a good sporting director, a good owner, and a good head of recruitment. That signing should have never gone through, it should have been a veto.”
Neville is the co-owner of Salford City and he’s described the need for him, the sporting director and manager to be on the same page when it comes to transfers.
The Man Utd legend added: “You’ve got a head of recruitment, a sporting director, and a team of scouts who have probably watched between them a thousand games in a season, and they might have watched the players you’re trying to sign between 15 to 20 times live between them all.
“You have a coach and a manager who have literally been concentrating on getting results, coaching his players, assessing pre-match and post-match – fixed on results and everything that is going on in the media – he’s probably never even watched these players live.
“You’re trusting that guy over another football guy, whose got a really good brain, to make a decision. The perfect scenario for me at Salford would have been, the owner and the chairman having a financial veto – if it didn’t fit the budget, it couldn’t come in, that’s a fact.
“The manager has a veto if he doesn’t want a player, but also the sporting director, on behalf of their recruitment, has a veto to say that this player isn’t right for us in the long-term.
“Everyone has a veto in essence and what you’d like as an owner is if the sporting director, the head of recruitment, and the manager are all on the same page.
“If they’re not, and this happened quite a bit [at Salford], you’ve got your sporting director and head of recruitment saying, ‘I’m not sure, we’ve watched him a lot,’ but then you’ve got the head coach who says that he used to have him at Grimsby, for example, and he wants him because he knows him – that’s the scenario that exists.”