​Manchester United have revealed that their January transfer window signing Alexis Sánchez has been pivotal in the club smashing their shirt sales record by more than three times the previous top tally.

Speaking with investors following the club releasing their second-quarter reports for 2017/18, via Goal, club executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward said: "Alexis Sanchez has set a new January signing record in terms of shirt sales, three times the previous record.

Manchester United v Huddersfield Town - Premier League

"This trade [Sánchez to United] generated some interesting social media stats. It was the biggest United post on Instagram with two million likes and comments, the most shared United Facebook post ever, the most retweeted United post ever, and the hashtag #Alexis7 was the number one trending topic on Twitter worldwide."

"To put that into context, the announcement posts generated 75 per cent more interactions than the announcement of the sale of the world’s most-expensive player last summer when Neymar moved from Barcelona to Paris Saint-Germain.”

Sánchez scored on his home debut for the Red Devils last weekend - pouncing on the rebound from his poorly struck penalty to bag his first goal for the club and spare his blushes. 

The Chilean forward was widely-tipped to join Man City for much of the season, but his agent fee and wage demands are believed to have turned the Citizens off the deal.

Meanwhile, ​United are believed to have suffered a blow in their pursuit of Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred - as strong rumours have emerged that the talented 24-year-old midfielder has already agreed terms with Man City and will join the club at the end of the season. Fred is a highly-regarded talent in Brazil, and has racked up six caps for the national team so far.