Top 8 Man Utd contract clauses from goal bonuses to Ballon d’Or add-ons

Manchester United have an incredible way with bonus clauses, using all sorted of baffling conditions to secure extra cash.

The Red Devils are the most valuable Premier League club, sitting only behind Real Madrid and Barcelona in the world rankings.

With a reports $3 billion in value, they have been able to attract some of the biggest stars on the globe to the club.

Paul Pogba’s return from Juventus for £89m is still a league record while they have spent over a billion pounds on players since the turn of the century.

But they have used bonus clauses to lure those talents away from their clubs.

And Daily Star Sport has taken a look through the fine print to find some of the bonus clauses from Old Trafford deals…

Fernandes’ flying form

United landed star midfielder Bruno Fernandes in January 2020, securing a £42million deal from Sporting Lisbon.

Having scored 15 goals for the Portuguese side that season, though, they took the chance to capitalise on his form.

The Mirror said United agreed to pay €5million (£4.5m) after the 26-year-old made 20 appearances for the club, which happened in the Europa League quarter-final win over FC Copenhagen in August.

While the club’s Champions League qualification saw them fork out another €5million to Sporting.

And Fernandes’ former side even had an eye on the future, securing for a 50-appearance and Ballon D’Or clause too.

But United could also make him a record-beater in his release clause, which MEN suggest could be a high as £85million.

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Martial’s massive fees

Anthony Martial was a relatively unknown talent when he signed from Monaco on transfer deadline day five years ago.

But United had to agree to a lot more than the £36million they initially paid to the Ligue 1 team, according to the Express.

The then-teenager commanded an extra £7.2million for scoring 25 Premier League goals by 2019, which he achieved in a 3-2 win over Newcastle in October 2018.

While Monaco asked for the same fee if Martial made 25 more appearances for France and won the Ballon d’Or.

Ighalo’s scoring incentive

United fans raised their eyebrows when Watford’s one-season wonder Odion Ighalo was signed on loan from Chinese Super League side Shanghai Shenhua last January.

But he made a flying start, scoring four goals in four cup games – and the Sun reported that a lucrative scoring bonus was behind it.

The Nigerian took £8,000 per goal he scored while securing £9,000 for every Premier League win he was involved win and £3,000 for draws.

Chuck in another bonus for United’s Champions League qualification and the bonus column filled up fast.

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Lingard locked in

Jesse Lingard is out of favour with Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, making just two cup starts and a substitute appearance this season.

It has seen the Englishman linked with a move away, reaching the last year of his four-year deal.

But the club could keep him at Old Trafford as the Mail reported last month that they would trigger a 12-month extension which they could action as agreed in the 2017 deal.

While it is likely to mean another six months on the bench, it would stop Lingard leaving for free.

De Gea’s dear cost

United’s longest-serving current player is their goalkeeper, having arrived from Atletico Madrid in 2012 to make 425 appearances between the posts.

But they are allegedly still paying the price for the man that cost €20million (£18million) from Spain.

The club paid €2million for his first 100 games in 25-game phases while Champions League appearances still cost €500,000 in the group stages and €250,000 in the knockouts.

If the Premier League title comes, Atletico will also win by taking €1million from United.

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Ibrahimovic’s golden goals

Jose Mourinho delighted in watching Zlatan Ibrahimovic lead United to the 2016/17 Carabao Cup and Europa League, scoring 28 goals in 46 games.

But they proved to be costly goals as 2018 book Football Leaks: the Dirty Business of Football revealed that he had an eye-watering goal bonus.

Picking up £235,000 for his first goal in the 2016 Community Shield, the Swede pocketed cash in five-goal increments that increased.

The sixth goal, coming in a Europa League win over Zorya, earned £395,000 for Ibrahimovic, getting to £851,000 by goal 21.

Sanchez’s staggering prize

United’s decision to bring Alexis Sanchez in from rivals Arsenal appeared to be doomed from the outset, with the forward scoring just five goals in two years.

But his poor form did help the club avoid some monumental bonus payments, according to the same book.

On a £391,000-a-week deal, the Chilean would allegedly get a £1.1million annual fee.

But reaching a combined 40 goals and assists would have paid £2million, a Champions League win £1million and a Premier League title £500,000, keeping £3.5million safe in the bank.

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Ronaldo’s record-breaking release clause

When Real Madrid came knocking for United’s Cristiano Ronaldo, the club did everything they could to keep the Ballon D’Or winner in 2009.

And that included putting a release clause of £80million in his deal at Old Trafford, a record at the time.

It was not enough, though, as the forward went on to make the Bernabeu move and help them to five Champions League honours in nine years.

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  • A Bonus Bonus – Luis Suarez

    When Barcelona’s former No.9 left for Atletico Madrid over the summer, they went to extreme lengths to keep him from going anywhere else.

    The Nou Camp side allegedly put United on an embargoed list for the forward, preventing him from signing for free at Old Trafford as he forced an exit.

    And it had to be put in the final deal for Suarez, keeping him out of United’s clutches.

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