Rogelio Funes Mori to Manchester United?

The first big transfer story of the Argentine post-season has broken not here in Buenos Aires, but England. Why did I move down here again? The Star, a highly-regarded British news publication* claimed on Monday that Sir Alex Ferguson, the manager of Manchester United no less, wants to give River Plate actual money – in British pounds sterling, which are still holding up pretty well against the Argentine peso – for Rogelio Funes Mori. Apparently he saw the youngster’s hat trick against Racing and was impressed. But Sir Alex, he’s only scored one other goal this year…

Funes Mori has struggled for form, it’s fair to say, and recently admitted in an interview with Olé that new River boss Ángel Cappa has made a world of difference to his confidence. He’s reasonably pacy and has good technique, but any Manchester United fans finding this page after searching for him shouldn’t get their hopes up too much – that hat trick against Racing on the penultimate weekend came very much out of the blue.

Born in Mendoza, he moved aged ten to Dallas with his family, and whilst there he took part in a US reality TV show, his prize at the end of which was a place in Dallas FC’s youth squad and the opportunity to go and train with Chelsea in England. During that stay, the River youth team for his equivalent age visited Stamford Bridge, and he was offered the chance to return to the land of his birth and play for the club his father is a lifelong fan of.

After debuting three matches from the end of the 2009 Torneo Clausura, and scoring his first goal in his third appearance, in the final match against Tigre, he had a disappointing Clausura (although in fairness to him, so did everyone else in River’s team) until Cappa’s arrival revitalised the squad. After finding a bit of confidence he hit that hat trick against Racing and followed it up the next week (this Saturday just gone) with a goal against Tigre in the last weekend, in what was by then a lost cause, Tigre already being 5-0 up before he scored. In my opinion, he’d be better served by staying another year in Argentina and continuing to learn, especially after such a relatively underwhelming first season. But money talks, and with River’s transfer plans over the winter break they’re going to need some…

*Note for non-British readers: The Star is far from a highly-regarded publication.

You can follow the Clausura and the Argentine sides in the 2010 Copa Libertadores via HEGS on Twitter (including updates during and between matches and similar stories that might not go up on the site until later). If you’ve not signed up yet you can do so here.

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3 thoughts on “Rogelio Funes Mori to Manchester United?

  1. HA! I am glad you added in that asterisk at the end of that entry! I do like Funes Mori but he is VERY raw at this moment in time. Spending time underneath the tutelage of Sir Alex Ferguson would, undoubtedly, be priceless for the kid, but he’ll benefit so much more from another year or two in South America. Either way, while I think he has promise and potential, I think a move to Manchester United, now or in the future, might be a step too far.

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