Manchester United’s summer transfer window has been dominated by incomings so far, but there could well be some high-profile departures before the window shuts.

Speculation regarding the future of United midfielder Paul Pogba continues to rumble on, with the likes of Real Madrid and Juventus reported to be interested in the Frenchman this summer.

Over the last few days, rumours have suggested that Real Madrid could offer Spanish midfielder Isco in exchange for Pogba this summer, who fell out of favour under Zinedine Zidane towards the end of last season. It is important to stress that MEN Sport understands United are not prepared to sell Pogba this summer.

Swap deals are notoriously difficult to complete, with a lot of moving parts involved, but United did manage to do a swap deal with Arsenal for Alexis Sanchez and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.

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So, what could happen if the swap deal between Isco and Pogba went through this summer?

Where would United finish in the Premier League in 2019/20?

We used Football Manager 2019 to have a bit of fun in trying to predict.

Isco – Manchester United

This is Isco’s profile in Football Manager 2019.

Current ability: 169/200

Potential ability: 180/200


Best attributes: Vision (19), technique (19), dribbling (18), first touch (18), flair (18), passing (17), balance (17), composure (16), determination (16).

To set up the simulation, we inputted a future transfer of £40 million in July 2019, which saw Pogba move to Real Madrid, with Isco moving in the opposite direction as part of the deal.

Using a fan made editor file, we also updated all the latest transfers, manager changes, promotions and relegations, to make it as realistic as possible, including the likes of Daniel James and Aaron Wan-Bissaka.

We then stopped United signing anyone else in-game, to see how much difference Isco could make on his own.

So how much difference would he make to United’s performance in the 2019/20 season?

Here’s what happened….

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Isco’s 2019/20 season for Manchester United

Isco had an incredible debut season for United, making 47 appearances in all competitions, scoring 11 times and assisting 12 times.

The Spaniard didn’t drop below an average rating of 7 in any competition he played in, which is very impressive indeed.

Get all the latest FIFA, Football Manager and other gaming news here.

Manchester United goals scored in 2019/20


However, despite Isco’s contribution, United’s goalscoring record was very poor in 2019/20 without Pogba, scoring just 54 goals in 38 games.

To put that number into context, that was three less than Crystal Palace in this season, and 11 less than United scored in 2018/19.


The Football Manager Database

Why do we use the Football Manager database?


The Football Manager database currently contains data on more than 800,000 individuals and 45,000 active clubs, with data sourced from their international on the ground scouting network which numbers roughly 1,000 people, among their ranks are some who are involved in football in professional capacities, including scouts and coaches.

In addition to the information on players, clubs and backroom staff, the Football Manager database also contains a wealth of information on many other aspects of the professional game, including data on competitions, cups, team and individual awards, weather, finances, officials and more.

The database also incorporates a wealth of nation-specific details such as currency, tax rates, national team records, histories in major tournaments and so on. All of this information combines to create an accurate representation of ‘real world’ football within Football Manager.

Football Manager use a query-based system of checks and balances designed to ensure that there are no statistical outliers within any particular club, division, league or country.

In addition, each annual iteration of Football Manager has built-in algorithms which check for outliers and data discrepancies. Data accuracy is further ensured by input from contributors who are active within the professional game (players, agents etc.) who provide regular feedback.

Sports Interactive (SI)      


Sports Interactive (SI) is the world’s leading developer of football management simulations through the best-selling Football Manager series.

Created by football fans, for football fans, and available on computer, smartphone and tablet, Football Manager tops the charts in almost every country where football is played.

SI has ongoing relationships with some of the biggest names in professional football, including the Bundesliga, the League Managers Association, The EFL and many other leagues and national associations.

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