Manchester United's unbelievable decision on £18 million duo could cost them two times that

Ezequiel Garay for Benfica

Manchester United will regret the decision not to sign Ezequiel Garay and Stefan de Vrij.

Manchester United's defensive weaknesses have been exposed in their initial Premier League encounters this season, failing to beat both Swansea and Sunderland.

The Red Devils wanted Mats Hummels to replace Nemanja Vidic, but with Dortmund refusing to sell, they have struggled to add defensive recruits.

Marcos Rojo, signed last week for £16 million was a start, but United could live to regret not signing another two players for only slightly more than they paid to Sporting Lisbon.

Rojo's Argentina teammate Ezequiel Garay signed for Zenit St Petersburg from Benfica for just £10 million, while Dutch international Stefan de Vrij moved to Lazio from PSV.

Both defenders were strongly linked to Manchester United, and de Vrij was a key figure for Van Gaal's Netherland side at the recent World Cup.

Failing to move for the duo, even one of them, looks like incredibly poor transfer business on the part of United, forced to currently play Tyler Blackett in defence.

While the youngster has equipped himself well, Phil Jones and Chris Smalling have predictably failed to step up early on, and both Garay and de Vrij are superior and more experienced players.

While pundits criticise United for potentially overpaying for Angel di Maria at £60 million plus, both Garay and de Vrij would have been bargains, and could have added a gloss to United's transfer business, balancing out any inflated fees.

Instead, if United want now to sign a defender, a £30 million move for Mehdi Benatia looks most likely.

Yet with failure to secure Champions League football a threat of a £30-40 million revenue loss hanging over United's head for a second successive season, Garay and de Vrij would have been far smarter purchases, and it's incredible really that the Red Devils did not move on either.

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