Belfast Telegraph

Schweinsteiger, Schneiderlin on board with Manchester United

By Mark Staniforth

Manchester United have fired a further message of intent to their Premier League title rivals by confirming the arrivals of Germany World Cup winner Bastian Schweinsteiger and Southampton midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin.

The pair have jetted out with their team-mates - including fellow new boys Memphis Depay and Matteo Darmian - for United's pre-season tour of America. The Red Devils play their first match of the tour against Mexican side Club America in Seattle on July 17.

Schweinsteiger - who played under United boss Louis van Gaal for two years at Bayern Munich from 2009 - has agreed a three-year deal while Schneiderlin has signed for four with the option of a further one-year extension.

And there was more good news for United as goalkeeper David de Gea was confirmed among their travelling party for their US tour, seemingly ruling out any imminent move to Real Madrid.

Van Gaal has moved to emphatically solve the midfield issues which were integral to United's poor start last season and in 30-year-old Schweinsteiger in particular he has landed one of the game's most feted and experienced campaigners.

The German made 500 appearances for Bayern and won eight Bundesliga titles, as well as making 111 appearances for his country culminating in their 2014 World Cup triumph.

Schweinsteiger said: "I have thoroughly enjoyed my time at Bayern Munich. Manchester United is the only club that I would have left Munich for.

"I feel ready for this new and exciting challenge in what I regard as the most competitive league in the world and I am looking forward to working with Louis van Gaal again."

Van Gaal hailed Schweinsteiger as "the ultimate professional". He said: "Bastian is, of course, no stranger to me. I am truly delighted.

"His record speaks for itself; he has won every honour at club level and was a major part of the successful Germany World Cup-winning team last summer."

Confirmation of Schneiderlin's arrival followed shortly after that of Schweinsteiger.

The 25-year-old France international had no doubts about his future once he realised United were showing an interest.

Schneiderlin said: "Once I learned that United were interested, it was an easy decision. I have enjoyed seven happy years with Southampton and it's a club that will always be in my heart.

"But the chance to help this great club be successful was too good to miss."

One player sure to exit Old Trafford is striker Robin van Persie, who is set to be officially unveiled as a Fenerbahce player in Istanbul today.

Angel di Maria, meanwhile, could follow as Paris Saint-Germain prepare a £47m offer.

Belfast Telegraph


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