Manchester United have officially signed Morgan Schneiderlin from Southampton, as the French midfielder completed his medical at Carrington training ground today. United had to pay £25million as transfer fee to Southampton, of which ______ will be paid to RC Strasbourg, the club where Schneiderlin started out as youth academy player in 1995. Manchester United beat out stiff competition from Premier League rivals Arsenal to capture their newest recruit.
At the age of 18, Schneiderlin made a £1.2million from Strasbourg to Southampton, then playing in the Championship, the 2nd-highest football division in England, in the summer of 2008. Despite suffering relegation to League One in his 1st season, he quickly established himself as an important 1st-team player for the Saints. He went on to play a key role in Southampton’s back-to-back promotions from League One to the Premier League. He retained his 1st-team status at Southampton whilst playing in the Premier League, making a formidable midfield partnership with Adam Lallana, who would eventually join Liverpool in July 2014.
In his debut season in the Premier League (2012-13), Schneiderlin had recorded the most tackles, most interceptions, as well as the highest work-rate in the league, as well as scoring 5 goals. Coincidentally, he scored his 1st Premier League goal against Manchester United, which Southampton went on to lose 2-3, after leading 2-1 till 86 minutes. The Saints finished 14th in the Premier League that season, and his contribution to Southampton’s survival in the 2012-13 season earned him the club’s ‘Players’ Player of the Year 2012-13’ and ‘Fans’ Player of the Year 2012-13’ awards.
Schneiderlin’s consistent performance for his club was noticed by France coach Didier Deschamps, and he was called up to the national squad for the 2014 World Cup, in which he made his national debut against Ecuador. He has made 9 appearances for the French national team so far, with his last cap coming in a 2-0 friendly victory against Denmark on March 29, 2015. With his recent move to Old Trafford, Schneiderlin will be expected to take over the holding-midfield role from England veteran Michael Carrick, who will turn 34 exactly four weeks from now.