Manchester United owners, the Glazer family, have broken their silence to defend Sir Alex Ferguson's decision not to spend the £80million generated from the transfer of Cristiano Ronaldo.
United's owners rarely speak to fans or the media but last night the family revealed that Ferguson has kept his powder dry this summer simply because he believes too many modern players are motivated by money.
As clubs like Real Madrid and neighbours Manchester City spend hugely to get to thetop of their respective divisions, the Barclays Premier League champions have declared their spending closed after the arrival of Antonio Valencia (£20m), Gabriel Obertan (£3m) and Michael Owen (free transfer).
Glazer spokesman Teshin Nayani said: 'The manager has not been able to locate players that he believes fit the Manchester United mindset. Ones that are motivated to play for United. You don't want to pay over the odds for players not willing to give their all.'
The Glazer family continue to carry a debt of around £700m following their purchase of the club five years ago. But Nayani claimed that this has nothing to do with Ferguson's decision to keep hold of the Ronaldo money.
He added: 'Our operating profits are climbing and we continue to secure sponsorship deals. Our stadium is packed out and we have very good media revenues. On a normal business level, United is in a very strong position and, so far, unaffected by the economic downturn.
'The manager has a significant amount of money to invest if he wants to. We do have debt service and carry a significant amount of debt but our interest payments are around £43.3m a year while our operating profit was £80m topped by an extra £25m from transfer profits.
'We are talking about a net amount of about £60m. That cash can be reinvested in the squad. The point is there is money coming in.'
United arrived in the capital of South Korea from Malaysia yesterday ahead of their third tour game against FC Seoul tomorrow night.
Interest in United is always at a peak here, especially with local hero Ji-sung Parkjoining the tour following international duty.
One player still getting used to all the fuss is centre forward Dimitar Berbatov. The Bulgarian is under pressure to perform this season after a modest contribution last time round.
He said: 'I have never been on a tour like this. It is like being part of The Beatles. Everyone is screaming our name.
'I think I can do better than last season. It is always good to start well and I feel I amtraining well at the moment.'