London (AFP) - Jose Mourinho says Manchester United made huge savings in the transfer market by getting their business done before Neymar's world record move to Paris Saint-Germain triggered a global price spike.
Mourinho paid a British record fee of £75 million (S$132.16 million) for Everton striker Romelu Lukaku and took his spending to over £130 million with swoops for Chelsea midfielder Nemanja Matic and Benfica defender Victor Lindelof.
After those deals were completed, French giants PSG broke the world record with a €222 million (S$358.22 million) move for Barcelona star Neymar.
United boss Mourinho believes if his club had waited to land their top targets they would have paid significantly increased fees as a result.
Praising United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward for predicting the market surge,the United manager told The Times: "I think we were very clever. We thought that something could happen that could change the market forever.
"Normally the last part of the market is less expensive, but this season, after Neymar, everything changed and changed for the worse in terms of prices.
"I think Lukaku on August 31 would have been £150 million. Matic would have been £60 million or £70 million. Neymar changed everything.
"If the biggest transfer in history had still been Pogba, I think (Liverpool forward) Philippe Coutinho would now be in Barcelona at £101 million. People look to the £200 million figure now."