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Raphael Varane gets hero’s welcome at Old Trafford after sealing Man United move

Manchester United v Leeds United – Premier League – Old Trafford
(Image credit: Martin Rickett)

Raphael Varane received an outstanding reception as Manchester United’s new signing was paraded in front of a packed Old Trafford before their Premier League opener against rivals Leeds.

Having announced a deal had been struck to sign the France international on July 27, the completion of the 28-year-old’s signing has been delayed by the need for a visa, isolation and medical.

Such delays meant Varane missed Saturday’s clash with rivals Leeds, but United announced just before kick-off that he had signed a four-year deal for a reported £34million fee, rising to £42million with add-ons.

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The France international was introduced to the crowd nine minutes before kick-off and met by a wall of noise when he emerged from the tunnel holding his United shirt with the number 19 on the back.

“Manchester United is one of the most iconic clubs in world football and the chance to come here and play in the Premier League is something I couldn’t turn down,” the 2018 World Cup winner said.

“There is a lot more that I want to achieve in my career and I know I’m joining a squad full of great players who will all have the same determination to win matches and trophies.

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“Having spoken to the manager I can see how much progress has been made over the last few seasons and I now join a group ready to play at the highest level.

“I want to make an impact here and I will give everything to become part of this club’s illustrious history.”

United have admired Varane since Sir Alex Ferguson’s time in charge and Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is overjoyed to have signed the Madrid centre-back.

“I’m absolutely delighted that we have managed to secure one of the best defenders in the world over the last 10 years,” the Norwegian said.

“Raphael is a proven winner who we have tracked over a long period of time and we know just how much of a dedicated professional he is.

“We have great depth of international defenders and he will add his immense skill set and leadership to that group.

“He is a unique defender with a rare combination of top-level attributes that I know will rub off on our younger players.

“He has won everything there is to win but I know that he is still determined to succeed, I can’t wait to welcome him into the squad.”