Transfer tittle-tattle?

"So many column inches were wasted although the extensive coverage of the Olympics stemmed the flow of speculation this year - even if United were linked with an average of over 22 different players each month. Nonetheless, there were some impressively correct calls."

- Adam Marshall,

03/09/2012 13:57, Report by Adam Marshall
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Blog: Window addressing

Now the transfer window has slammed shut for several months, we can take stock of a period awash with speculation, featuring the usual protracted sagas and a whole string of names from around the globe being linked with a move to United.

As a whole, the summer was a busy one on the incoming front for Sir Alex Ferguson. There were five new arrivals, which means we need to open by dishing out some credit to those who called these first.

Robin van Persie was forwarded as a United target by Talksport on 9 May with the suggestion of a "sensational move" being considered, even if it looked unlikely at that stage, as admitted by the radio station themselves. Over a month later, former Lancashire cricketer Neil Fairbrother tweeted to say he'd spotted the Dutchman in nearby Hale and this prompted the Manchester Evening News to rightly predict a switch north could be on the cards - but City were still deemed favourites at this point.

After the striker's father Bob claimed it would be "impossible" for the striker to join one of Arsenal's domestic rivals, Juventus emerged on the scene for a time before Sir Alex wrapped up a deal every bit as sensational as it seemed when first mooted.

German publications Bild and Kicker were very much across Shinji Kagawa's situation and led the way throughout his transfer after initially reporting his reluctance to sign a new deal at Borussia Dortmund. The Mail on Sunday were spot-on with Nick Powell and beat everybody with the news he would sign - a story later backed up by Sir Alex, who admitted a deal had been agreed before Crewe's League Two Play-Off final. Angelo Henriquez told La Tercera about his dream to play for United back in May and had long been touted as a target but the Alexander Büttner deal came out of the blue with Voetbal International breaking the story on the Sunday he flew to England.

Büttner's capture came after months of talk that Everton's Leighton Baines was a target at left-back but it would appear that no bid was ever tabled for the England international. There were sagas involving Lucas Moura, who eventually opted for PSG when they arrived late to the table with a stunning

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