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United confirm first signing

photoManchester United have confirmed the arrival of Ander Herrera from Athletic Bilbao on a four-year deal with an option for a fifth, after triggering the Spaniard’s buy-out clause.

United’s interest in the 24-year-old midfielder had unexpectedly resurfaced during the week and Herrera underwent a medical at Carrington yesterday afternoon, but the move looked to have stalled this morning, as Athletic Bilbao issued a statement in which they announced a £28.8m offer from United had been rejected.

The transfer, however, went ahead despite the initial fear that it might take longer than expected for United to land their man and Herrera was unveiled as a Manchester United player earlier this afternoon.

“Ander is a fantastic young player, with great energy and creativity,” said Ryan Giggs.

“We believe him to be one of the brightest young prospects in Spain and I am certain he will be a big hit with the United fans. I’m delighted he has made the decision to come to Manchester and play his part in the club’s future. I’m looking forward to seeing him in action on our summer tour to America.”

In his first interview as Manchester United player Herrera said: “Signing for Manchester United is a dream come true. I have played at Old Trafford for Athletic Club in the UEFA Europa League and it was one of the highlights of my career so far. I have joined United to do all I can to help the team reach the club’s objectives.

“Having arrived on Tuesday, I’m excited to now be living in Manchester and I can’t wait for my first game in United’s famous red shirt. I will never forget my time with Athletic Club and I’d like to thank the fans and staff for all their support and, above all, wish all my fantastic former team-mates all the best for the future.”

Dan