The Red Devils haven’t been settled since Sir Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013 and, if Ole Gunnar Solskjaer does lose his job in the coming weeks, it’ll be yet more upheaval for a club that once had it all.

United’s 2021/22 season has started miserably, with the club exiting the EFL Cup in September and falling adrift in the Premier League title race.

Performances in the Champions League have been underwhelming, too.

This remains a squad filled with world class players but they look disjointed right now.

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Cristiano Ronaldo’s early success has given way to concerns over his true benefit to the side, while Jadon Sancho, signed in the summer after United spent two years chasing him, can’t get a start.

United’s wage bill is the highest in the Premier League, coming in at more than £226 million-per-year, according to Spotrac, but the club certainly aren’t seeing a return on that investment on the pitch.

Which players are overpaid?

So it’s time to see how much each player is earning – and whether they’re deserving of that salary.

Of course, this is all relative to wages in modern football. If a player earning £100,000-per-week is considered ‘underpaid’, we’re not claiming that they should feel hard done by, rather their wages don’t correlate – in our opinion – when compared to the salaries of their teammates.

Based on current form it would be easy to dismiss each player as being overpaid. We’re sure a lot of Man United fans would.

However, we’ve adopted less of an emotional approach to this and tried to be as truthful as possible.

With the explainer out of the way, let’s get into it. All figures as provided by Spotrac.

Very underpaid

Mason Greenwood – £75,000-a-week

Scott McTominay – £20,000-a-week

There haven’t been many bright sparks for Man United this season but Greenwood has been one of them.

The young attacker continues to look like a future star and on form alone he doesn’t deserve to be one of their lowest-paid players.

McTominay’s wages, meanwhile, certainly don’t reflect his value to the team.


Bruno Fernandes – £180,000-a-week

Eric Bailly – £80,000-a-week

Diogo Dalot – £25,000-a-week

Fernandes has been outstanding for United since his arrival yet he’s just their 10th highest-paid player.

Can you think of nine players who deserve more than the Portuguese?

Bailly will wince when he sees how much Maguire is earning. The Ivorian needs to step up his performances but compared to his teammates, he’s currently underpaid.

Spot on(Paid Exactly what they deserved

Raphael Varane – £340,000-a-week

Marcus Rashford – £200,000-a-week

Harry Maguire – £189,904-a-week

Luke Shaw – £150,000-a-week

Victor Lindelof – £120,000-a-week

Donny van de Beek – £120,000-a-week

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Dean Henderson – £100,000-a-week

Aaron Wan-Bissaka – £90,000-a-week

Jesse Lingard – £75,000-a-week

We haven’t seen the best of Varane at Old Trafford just yet but he’s a world class centre-back at his best and United will be hoping he can get to that level again.

Maguire has faced plenty of criticism for his performances this season and many will feel as though he’s overpaid, but again, we know he can play better than he currently is. He’s played like a top five centre-back before.

Things aren’t going well for Van de Beek right now. We’ll be able to judge the midfielder better when he’s given game time, but at least he isn’t breaking the bank.


Jadon Sancho – £350,000-a-week

Paul Pogba – £290,000-a-week

Edinson Cavani – £250,000-a-week

Fred – £120,000-a-week

Nemanja Matic – £120,000-a-week

Alex Telles – £93,077-a-week

Phil Jones – £75,000-a-week

Few would have said Sancho wasn’t worth £350,000-a-week when he joined United in the summer.

But right now it’s hard not to say the winger is being overpaid.

The 21-year-old is United’s third-highest earner, yet he’s struggled to make an impact at the club.

Pogba isn’t performing well enough on a consistent basis to warrant his wages and while Cavani is a decent player, paying £250,000-a-week to a non-starter is too much.

The performances of Fred and Matic also see them in the overpaid category

Very overpaid

Cristiano Ronaldo – £510,000-a-week

David de Gea – £375,000-a-week

Anthony Martial – £250,000-a-week

Juan Mata – £160,000-a-week

Ronaldo was always going to command hefty wages but United have to be wondering whether they allowed their heart to rule their head when they decided to bring the 36-year-old back in the summer.

The Portuguese forward will score goals this season but he doesn’t appear to be a great fit in the side, with his lack of pressing a particular concern.

De Gea is playing better than he has in previous seasons but £375,000-a-week is still far too much for a goalkeeper beyond his prime.

The sooner United can get Martial and Mata off their books, the better.


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