Football Manager

Man Utd on Football Manager 2022: 10 tips when starting a new save

Tom Gott
United are a popular choice in FM22
United are a popular choice in FM22 / James Gill - Danehouse/GettyImages

Manchester United are one of the most popular picks when it comes to new Football Manager 2022 saves, and with good reason. They're one of the biggest clubs on the planet.

The problem for United, however, is they haven't been acting like that.

There are a lot of things that need sorting out at Old Trafford. If you choose to take on the job, here are some good places to start.

1. Figure out your goalkeeper situation

David De Gea
Is De Gea your long-term option? / Nathan Stirk/GettyImages

David de Gea is your best goalkeeper, but his current ability is a hardly extraordinary 153. That's only going to go down now that he is 30 years old.

Behind him, you've got young Dean Henderson. His current ability sits at 142, so he's not going to be happy sitting around playing second-fiddle to the ageing De Gea.

We recommend selling De Gea and putting your faith in Henderson, but either way, one needs to go.

2. Sort out Pogba's contract

Paul Pogba
Pogba's contract is winding down / Gonzalo Arroyo Moreno/GettyImages

Paul Pogba is willing to sign a contract extension as soon as you start the game. Get on it.

He's your best midfielder and will receive no shortage of offers if you let his contract enter its final six months. You'll lose him for nothing when he's actually worth close to £100m.

Even if you don't see Pogba as part of your long-term plans, you have to re-sign him and sell him on next summer. Just don't let him walk.

3. Don't forget your youth

Shola Shoretire
Shoretire has high potential / Jonathan Moscrop/GettyImages

United have a rich history of bringing young players through to the first team, and there are a number of youngsters who look primed for breakthroughs.

Anthony Elanga is already flirting with stardom, but Hannibal, Shola Shoretire and left-back Alvaro Fernandez aren't far off. They're all future superstars and should get as many minutes as you can afford to give them.

Don't go crazy in the transfer market because you'll block the progression of those starlets as well as loanee Amad Diallo, who can become your best player in just a few years.

4. Look to sign a young striker

Cristiano Ronaldo
Ronaldo's days are numbered / Nathan Stirk/GettyImages

Cristiano Ronaldo has seen his ability slashed after the Winter Update. The 36-year-old's current ability is still a hefty 167, but that's only going to go south and backup Edinson Cavani isn't going to be much help for long either.

Mason Greenwood has been removed from the game, meaning United are without a young striker. Anthony Martial is out on loan at Sevilla but you might not want to bring him back.

You'll need to figure out your next move quick. Perhaps fight your way to the front of the Erling Haaland queue or push to sign Kylian Mbappe once his contract expires in Paris.

5. Fix the midfield pivot

You can find better options than Fred / Soccrates Images/GettyImages

United have been in need of a midfield overhaul for a while now, and you can finally help them address that.

Nemanja Matic can be sold, and truthfully, you could part with both Fred and Scott McTominay too. McFred is a capable option but neither player is the superstar you want them to be.

If you're playing a defensive midfielder, time to hit up the transfer market and look for a fresh face - perhaps of the ilk of Declan Rice.

6. Consider a new centre-back

Harry Maguire
Maguire has had a downgrade / Michael Regan/GettyImages

Raphael Varane is a star at the back, but alongside him, there are more questions than answers.

Harry Maguire's current ability has dropped to 148, making him the tenth best player in the team. That's good, but it's not good enough for United.

Someone like Milan Skriniar or Sebastian Coates would be huge for this team.

7. Free Phil Jones

Phil Jones
Jones can be sold immediately / Matthew Ashton - AMA/GettyImages

Phil Jones sits atop the pile of players who you need to try and shift as soon as possible.

Alongside him, you can field offers for Lee Grant, Eric Bailly, Nemanja Matic, Jesse Lingard and Juan Mata, in the hope of bringing in a little extra for the transfer kitty.

There are also a few loanees who need selling once they return, namely Andreas Pereira and Axel Tuanzebe.

8. Build around Jadon Sancho

Jadon Sancho
Sancho is your future / Laurence Griffiths/GettyImages

United's core group of players isn't the youngest, but 21-year-old Jadon Sancho is the undisputed star of the future.

With a potential ability of 177, Sancho can become one of the best players on the planet and you need to help him reach that level by building your system around him.

You'll get the most out of Sancho as a left winger, with the inverted winger role the best for him.

9. Boost your coaching team

Mike Phelan, Cristiano Ronaldo
United's coaching team is a little underwhelming / Naomi Baker/GettyImages

The scouting and medical departments at United are excellent but the coaching team aren't much to rave about on FM22.

There are still three vacant spots in your backroom staff and we advise you give them to outfield coaches, as your goalkeeper and fitness sections are doing alright at the minute.

There are some excellent coaches available to hire immediately. If you want some help, here's our guide.

10. Plan for the present & the future

Ralf Rangnick
Sustained success is the demand at United / Matthew Ashton - AMA/GettyImages

United have been rebuilding for what feels like an eternity. It's time to end that and start a new dynasty in English football.

You should look for young superstars who can shine now and dominate for the next decade, like Haaland, Eduardo Camavinga, Rice and Matthijs de Ligt.

Patience is already wearing a little thin at United, so you need to balance long-term planning with immediate success. Good luck.