France centre-back Rafael Varane finalized his move to Manchester United on Saturday for a reported fee of around $56 million after signing a four-year contract.
The 28-year-old defender joins Real Madrid, where he spent 10 seasons helping the club win 18 trophies, including four Champions League titles. He was also a key member of the 2018 World Cup winning France team. He joined Real Madrid in 2011 from French club Lens.
Varane poses before fans at Old Trafford ahead of United’s opening game of the Premier League season against Leeds, wearing a United jersey and taking a selfie in front of a full capacity crowd.
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) 14 August 2021
The deal comes nearly two weeks after United’s signing of Jadon Sancho saw the Premier League club pay Borussia Dortmund a fee of 85 million euros ($100 million) for the 21-year-old. England winger
“Manchester United are one of the most prestigious clubs in world football and the opportunity to be here and play in the Premier League is something I cannot turn down,” Varane said in a statement.
“I want to achieve more in my career and I know that I am joining a team full of great players who will have the same determination to win matches and trophies. After talking to the manager I can see how much progress has been made over the past few seasons and now I’m in the group ready to play at the highest level.
United have also extended manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s contract this summer as the team looks to improve on their second-place league finish.
The club ended last season without silverware after losing to Villarreal in the Europa League final on penalties. It is the longest drought for United since 1980, in the early days of Alex Ferguson’s otherwise trophy-laden reign.
United last won the Premier League title in the 2012–13 season and have since seen crosstown rivals Manchester City lift the trophy four times, including last season.