PHOTOS: Marouane Fellaini completes £27.5m move to Manchester United
Manchester United left it late to sign Marouane Felliani from Everton for £27.5million.
United were linked with the Belgian midfielder throughout the summer but they only confirmed the signing an hour after the transfer window closed on Monday evening.
Fellaini was forced to hand in an official transfer request to push through his move to Old Trafford and with just minutes remaining he put pen to paper on the deal, which will see him reunited with his former Everton manager David Moyes.
“He is a player with great ability and strength and I think he will make a real difference to our squad,” said Moyes.
“He can play higher up, if we need it, behind the striker or as a defensive or holding midfielder. In any position in the middle of the field he’s comfortable.
“Because of that I think it’s definitely a position where people have said we’ve been short of numbers, with the likes of Paul Scholes [retiring] and Darren Fletcher not ready to come back just now. I felt we needed to strengthen there and I’m glad we got him.”
Fellaini made 166 appearances for Everton, scoring 33 goals, and, while sad to be leaving Goodison Park, he is delighted to be joining the champions.
“I am thrilled to sign for Manchester United. I have known the manager for many years now and I have a lot of respect for his way of working,” he said.
“When I was given the opportunity to work with him again, I jumped at the chance. I had a fantastic time at Everton and I’d like to thank all the fans and staff there for everything they have done for me.
“But being a Manchester United player is something that every player dreams of and I believe that I can make a real contribution to the team’s efforts to win trophies in the future.”
United looked set to bring in Ander Herrera from Athletic Bilbao but the deal fell through for “bureaucratic reasons”. It later emerged that imposters claiming to be representatives from United arrived at the headquarters of La Liga only to leave without paying the €36million release clause.
It was also reported that United had completed a late swoop for Real Madrid’s Fabio Coentrao, but the paperwork was not completed in time.