Man United makes Shaw world’s most expensive teen

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MANCHESTER, England (AP) - England defender Luke Shaw became the world’s most expensive teenage player on Friday and Manchester United’s second signing in 24 hours following its worst English Premier League campaign.

The 18-year-old left back joined United from Southampton, reportedly for more than 27 million pounds ($46 million), straight after returning from his first World Cup with England.

Southampton confirmed the deal made Shaw “the most expensive teenager ever,” which would eclipse fees of around 26 million pounds ($44 million) that saw Wayne Rooney join Manchester United in 2004 and Marquinhos sign for Paris Saint-Germain last year.

Shaw signed a four-year contract, with an option to extend for a further year if he continues to develop as one of the most exciting youngsters in football.

“I want to continue to progress my career and joining United is the ideal place for me to do that,” Shaw said in a statement.

Louis van Gaal doesn’t officially take charge at United until his World Cup campaign as Netherlands manager is over, but players are being signed ready for the Dutchman’s arrival. United paid around $50 million for Spanish midfielder Ander Herrera the day before Shaw’s arrival.

The record 20-time English champions are spending early in the summer transfer window after dithering last year in the post-Alex Ferguson era led to an alarming, and costly, slump on the pitch. David Moyes was fired just before the season ended with United going from 2013 champions to seventh-place finishers last month.

United’s management has convinced Shaw to join them despite the lack of Champions League football next season. Having already made 67 first-team appearances at Southampton, Shaw will be hoping he isn’t just the backup to 33-year-old Patrice Evra at left back.

“Luke is a very talented young left back with great potential,” assistant manager Ryan Giggs said. “He has developed immensely during his time at Southampton.”

Shaw usurped Ashley Cole as backup to Leighton Baines in the England World Cup squad, leading to the Chelsea veteran’s international retirement. Shaw, who made his international debut only in March, won his third cap in Tuesday’s 0-0 draw with Costa Rica before England’s early exit from Brazil.

Shaw is the latest departure from Southampton since the south-coast club achieved its highest-ever Premier League points tally to finish eighth in May. Manager Mauricio Pochettino left for Tottenham, striker Rickie Lambert joined Liverpool, and midfielder Adam Lallana is also set for a move to Anfield.

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