Manchester United have finalized the £55 million transfer of Lisandro Martinez from Ajax as part of Erik ten Hag’s summer rebuild.
Ten Hag had been looking for a new centre-back in this transfer window and had previously worked with the Argentina international during his three seasons at Ajax.
Martinez has signed a five-year contract for £120,000 per week with an option for an additional year after United and Ajax rapidly agreed on a £55 million cost earlier in July.
United will pay an initial fee of £46.8 million plus £8.5 million in add-ons, making Martinez the club’s second most expensive defender after Harry Maguire.
Martinez considered his move to Manchester United as an honor, and he believes United can become a significant power under Ten Hag.
‘It’s an honor to be a part of such a renowned football team,’ he remarked. ‘I fought so hard to get here, and now that I’m here, I’m going to push myself even harder.’
‘I’ve been fortunate enough to be a part of successful teams throughout my career, and that’s something I hope to continue at Manchester United.’ There will be a lot of effort to get there, but I am confident that under this manager and coaches, and with my new teammates, we can do it. I’d want to thank Ajax and their fans for their unwavering support. I had an incredible time there, but I believe the time has come for me to put my skills to the test in a different setting. Now I’m at the ideal club to do so.’
‘Manchester United is thrilled to announce the club has reached agreement with Ajax for the signing of Argentine international defender Lisandro Martinez, subject to medical, player terms being negotiated, and UK visa procedures,’ said a club statement.
Martinez made the news after being photographed arriving at the club’s Carrington training base on Tuesday, driven in by fellow summer acquisition Christian Eriksen in a 4×4 Audi.
Martinez was also seen the night before in Manchester City Center at the Italian restaurant Don Giovanni with his girlfriend Muri Lopez, and has been staying at the nearby five-star Lowry Hotel.
Martinez is the club’s third summer signing, following the acquisition of left-back Tyrell Malacia from Feyenoord earlier in July, and playmaker Christian Eriksen from Brentford after his six-month contract expired.
Ten Hag will be hoping Martinez can assist improve a defense that conceded the second most goals in the Premier League last season, with 57.
The 24-year-old enters with high hopes of helping United get back to winning ways after a disastrous season in which they finished sixth and qualified for the Europa League under interim manager Ralf Rangnick following the resignation of Ole Gunnar Solskajer early in the season.