Incoming Manchester United signing Raphael Varane has won the lot, and hopes to add more medals to his collection at Old Trafford.

He follows Laurent Blanc in arriving at United as a Frenchman who is a World Cup winner. The difference is Varane is 28, while Blanc joined on a free transfer at 35-years-old.

Varane has become a legend in his own right, and Blanc admitted in 2018 that it was an honour to be compared to the departing Real Madrid star.

France v Switzerland - UEFA Euro 2020: Round of 16
(Photo by Alex Caparros – UEFA/UEFA via Getty Images)

Blanc told Marca in 2018: “He’s better than me and although he has luck, he has, above all, a talent that allows him to grow up in one of the biggest clubs in the world.

“He has been European champion with Real Madrid four times already and has more than 50 matches with France. This is something that had hardly been seen in any French player and less in a defender.

“It’s an honour to be compared to him.”


Blanc signed for United as a replacement for Jaap Stam. Due to the fact he was at the end of his career, he was only a stop-gap addition and well below the peak of his powers. Despite that, he showed moments of real quality at times.

He did manage to play a role in United’s 2002/03 title triumph, a feat Varane would love to replicate.

Varane is obviously hoping for a far longer stay at Old Trafford, and will want to show he is still a world class defender. When his five-year contract at United expires, he will be younger than Blanc was when he arrived, so he has plenty left in him.

Blanc’s words underline what a high quality player United are getting. And with Sir Alex famously pursuing Varane too back in 2011, the move also has his sign-off.

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