Man Utd land Juventus chief scout Javier Ribalta
Written by Simon Austin — June 23, 2017
MANCHESTER UNITED have made a star signing for their formidable recruitment department - Juventus chief scout Javier Ribalta.
The Spaniard will become one of United's recruitment bosses, along with Chief Scout Jim Lawlor and Marcel Bout, the Head of Global Scouting. Vice chairman Ed Woodward vowed to overhaul the club’s scouting operation 18 months ago - and he has certainly been true to his word.
With the help of executive headhunters Nolan Partners, he has brought in more than 50 new recruits, including former Seville 'super scout' Gerardo Guzman, who is overseeing Spain, and David Harrison, who was Head of North West Recruitment at Manchester City and is now Head of Academy Recruitment at United.
Ribalta, 36, was well respected in Turin, having been instrumental in the signings of Alvaro Morata, Kingsley Coman, Paulo Dybala and Alex Sandro. He also speaks five languages - Catalan, Spanish, English, Portuguese and Italian.
Ribalta said: "It has been a wonderful few years here. My thanks go to all involved with the club, particularly Giueseppe Marotta (CEO) and Fabio Paratici (Sporting Director), for the faith they have shown in my since day one. I will look back on my time at Juventus with great pleasure."
United's scouting network now looks truly formidable. Lyndon Tomlinson followed Harrison from the Etihad Campus to become his assistant at United, as did Ronnie Cusick, who is overseeing scouting in the North-West. His counterpart in the South is Mark Anderson – the man credited with discovering a 15-year-old Raheem Sterling for Liverpool – who has joined from Brighton.
Radoslaw Kucharski joined from Legia Warsaw to oversee scouting in Eastern Europe and Henny de Regt, who signed Rafael van der Vaart and Jan Vertonghen during his time at the fabled Ajax Academy, has been brought in to oversee European scouting.