Manchester United have completed a £47.2 million deal for Inter Milan goalkeeper Andre Onana.
Manchester United have finalized the signing of Inter Milan goalkeeper Andre Onana for £47.2 million (55 million euros).
The Cameroonian international, 27, has agreed to a five-year deal with the option of a one-year extension.
The fee is an initial £43.8 million plus a possible £3.4 million in add-ons, and the former Ajax goalkeeper will join the United squad on their pre-season tour of the United States.
“It’s an incredible honor to be joining Manchester United,” he remarked.
“I’ve worked hard my entire life to get here, overcoming many obstacles along the way.”
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Onana will take over as United’s first-choice goalkeeper, replacing David de Gea, who departed the club in July after his contract expired after 12 years.
“Walking out at Old Trafford to defend our goal and contribute to the team will be another amazing experience,” Onana continued.
“This is the beginning of a new journey for me, with new teammates and new goals to strive for.”
“Manchester United has a long history of incredible goalkeepers, and I will now give everything I have in order to create my own legacy in the coming years.”
‘I am confident that Ten Hag will produce results.’
During a seven-and-a-half-year stint with Ajax, Onana won three league titles and received a nine-month sentence in 2021 for a doping test under United boss Erik ten Hag.
Onana joined Inter on a free transfer in July 2022, and he helped the Italians reach the Champions League final last season, when they were defeated 1-0 by Premier League champions Manchester City.
“I am thrilled to be working with Erik ten Hag again, and I can’t wait to contribute to the success I know he is determined to deliver at this fantastic football club,” Onana said.
He preserved eight clean sheets in 24 Serie A games last season as Inter finished third, adding 13 in the Champions League – the highest of any goalkeeper – for a total of 104 clean sheets in 255 club appearances.
Onana issued a farewell message to Inter on social media shortly before his departure, saying, “I don’t know if I was the best, but I always gave my best.”
“Andre was our top choice to become the new goalkeeper for Manchester United, with exactly the right profile of technical attributes and personality,” United’s football director John Murtough stated.
“With his track record of success, we are confident that Andre will contribute to the winning mentality we are cultivating within our squad.”
“At the age of 27, he is already one of the world’s best goalkeepers, and we firmly believe that he can develop even further in the coming years.”
After clashing with Cameroon coach Rigobert Song during the World Cup, Onana announced his retirement from international football in December.
‘It’s easy to see why Ten Hag desired an Onana reunion,’ says an analyst.
BBC football correspondent Simon Stone
It was easy to see why Ten Hag wanted to bring his old Ajax goalkeeper to Manchester United after his superb performance in the Champions League final defeat by Manchester City.
Onana’s distribution was not risk-free, but it came from the new school of goalkeeping, in which the last line of defense is now the first line of attack.
Goalkeepers are now required to be comfortable with the ball at their feet, to be able to play accurate short and long passes, and to provide angles from which dominant possession sides can advance down the field.
This was clearly not De Gea’s strong suit.
De Gea could only save shots. It earned him four Manchester United Player of the Year accolades and kept what was already a bleak time in the club’s history from worsening.
Onana will need to make saves. He will also have to adjust to the Premier League’s toughness and relative tolerance when it comes to aerial challenges in his own area, as De Gea did.
Ten Hag will encourage Onana to accept the challenge. If he does, the Cameroon international will be a brilliant acquisition.