Colombian Radamel Falcao signed for Manchester United on Monday, September 1, 2014, in a season-long loan deal with the option to buy. Gabriel Rossi / Getty Images
Colombian Radamel Falcao signed for Manchester United on Monday, September 1, 2014, in a season-long loan deal with the option to buy. Gabriel Rossi / Getty Images

Van Gaal says Falcao too good for United to pass up: ‘Opportunity not to be missed’



Manchester United have completed the shock signing of Colombia striker Radamel Falcao from Monaco on a season-long loan, the Premier League giants announced in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

“MUFC is delighted to announce Radamel Falcao has joined on a 1-year loan from Monaco with an option to buy,” United announced on their Twitter account, alongside a picture of the player posing with a club shirt.

United have reportedly paid Monaco around EU€10 million (Dh48.2m) to secure Falcao’s services for the season, with an option to make the deal permanent for another €55m.

“I am delighted to be joining Manchester United on loan this season,” Falcao told the United website. “Manchester United is the biggest club in the world and is clearly determined to get back to the top.”

The prolific 28-year-old forward, who missed the World Cup due to a serious knee injury, flew into Manchester to complete a medical examination hours before the transfer window closed on Monday evening.

He added: “I am looking forward to working with (manager) Louis van Gaal and contributing to the team’s success at this very exciting period in the club’s history.”

Van Gaal described Falcao, who is under contract with Monaco until 2018, as “one of the most prolific goalscorers in the game”.

He added: “His appearance-to-goal ratio speaks for itself and, when a player of this calibre becomes available, it is an opportunity not to be missed.”

United had earlier announced the arrival of versatile Netherlands international Daley Blind from Ajax in a deal reportedly worth around £14mn (Dh85.2m).

They also sold home-grown England forward Danny Welbeck to Arsenal for around £16m and allowed Mexican striker Javier Hernandez to join Real Madrid on a season-long loan with an option to buy.

Meanwhile, youngsters Nick Powell and Tom Lawrence both joined Leicester City on Tuesday – Powell on loan, Lawrence on a permanent four-year deal – while 21-year-old defender Michael Keane was loaned to Burnley.

Falcao, who has scored 20 goals in 51 appearances for Colombia, has already found the net twice for Monaco this season after making his comeback from a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament.

He will hope to win a place in United’s attack alongside Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney, leaving Van Gaal with a rich pool of striking talent at his disposal.

United are rebuilding after a disappointing seventh-place finish in the Premier League last season and have spent around £150m on new players, including a British-record £59.7m move for Angel di Maria.

They have also signed Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera, England left-back Luke Shaw, and Di Maria’s Argentina teammate Marcos Rojo.

Van Gaal is still waiting for his first competitive win as United manager, after two draws and a defeat in the league and a humiliating 4-0 loss to third-tier MK Dons in the League Cup.

After making his name with Argentine giants River Plate, Falcao signed for Porto in 2009 and established himself as one of Europe’s most lethal marksmen by scoring 72 goals in 87 games.

He won the Portuguese Cup in his first season and helped Porto to a treble of league, cup and Europa League honours in 2011, scoring the only goal in the Europa League final against Braga.

A move to Atletico Madrid followed later that year and he won the Europa League again in his first season, scoring twice as Diego Simeone’s side overcame Athletic Bilbao 3-0 in the final.

Falcao joined Monaco from Atletico last year in a deal worth around €60m, having scored 70 goals in 91 games during his time in Spain.

He scored nine goals in his first 17 league games with Monaco, but his debut season was curtailed in January when he damaged his knee in a Coupe de France (French Cup) tie, forcing him to miss the World Cup.

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Some of Darwish's last words

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His life in brief: Born in a village near Galilee, he lived in exile for most of his life and started writing poetry after high school. He was arrested several times by Israel for what were deemed to be inciteful poems. Most of his work focused on the love and yearning for his homeland, and he was regarded the Palestinian poet of resistance. Over the course of his life, he published more than 30 poetry collections and books of prose, with his work translated into more than 20 languages. Many of his poems were set to music by Arab composers, most significantly Marcel Khalife. Darwish died on August 9, 2008 after undergoing heart surgery in the United States. He was later buried in Ramallah where a shrine was erected in his honour.

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KEY DATES IN AMAZON'S HISTORY

July 5, 1994: Jeff Bezos founds Cadabra Inc, which would later be renamed to Amazon.com, because his lawyer misheard the name as 'cadaver'. In its earliest days, the bookstore operated out of a rented garage in Bellevue, Washington

July 16, 1995: Amazon formally opens as an online bookseller. Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies: Computer Models of the Fundamental Mechanisms of Thought becomes the first item sold on Amazon

1997: Amazon goes public at $18 a share, which has grown about 1,000 per cent at present. Its highest closing price was $197.85 on June 27, 2024

1998: Amazon acquires IMDb, its first major acquisition. It also starts selling CDs and DVDs

2000: Amazon Marketplace opens, allowing people to sell items on the website

2002: Amazon forms what would become Amazon Web Services, opening the Amazon.com platform to all developers. The cloud unit would follow in 2006

2003: Amazon turns in an annual profit of $75 million, the first time it ended a year in the black

2005: Amazon Prime is introduced, its first-ever subscription service that offered US customers free two-day shipping for $79 a year

2006: Amazon Unbox is unveiled, the company's video service that would later morph into Amazon Instant Video and, ultimately, Amazon Video

2007: Amazon's first hardware product, the Kindle e-reader, is introduced; the Fire TV and Fire Phone would come in 2014. Grocery service Amazon Fresh is also started

2009: Amazon introduces Amazon Basics, its in-house label for a variety of products

2010: The foundations for Amazon Studios were laid. Its first original streaming content debuted in 2013

2011: The Amazon Appstore for Google's Android is launched. It is still unavailable on Apple's iOS

2014: The Amazon Echo is launched, a speaker that acts as a personal digital assistant powered by Alexa

2017: Amazon acquires Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, its biggest acquisition

2018: Amazon's market cap briefly crosses the $1 trillion mark, making it, at the time, only the third company to achieve that milestone

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