Updated: Thursday, 21st February 2019 @ 6:15am

Second And: Ander Herrera becomes first Manchester United signing of Louis van Gaal era after 'hoax' bid

Second And: Ander Herrera becomes first Manchester United signing of Louis van Gaal era after 'hoax' bid

| By Kenny Lomas

Ander Herrera has signed for Manchester United after they met his £28.4million release clause, the club have confirmed.

The Spaniard flew to Manchester last night and arrived at the Aon training complex this afternoon to seal the deal.

He is now expected to join up with the squad for pre-season training next month and head to the United States with his new team mates on July 18.

Herrera told the club’s website: "Signing for Manchester United is a dream come true.

“I have played at Old Trafford for Athletic Club in the UEFA Europa League and it was one of the highlights of my career so far. I have joined United to do all I can to help the team reach the club's objectives.

“Having arrived on Tuesday, I’m excited to now be living in Manchester and I can’t wait for my first game in United’s famous red shirt.

“I will never forget my time with Athletic Club and I’d like to thank the fans and staff for all their support and, above all, wish all my fantastic former team-mates all the best for the future."

Herrera, 24, was one of David Moyes’ main transfer targets last summer, and was widely expected to sign for the club from Athletic Bilbao.

However, the deal fell through at the last minute under bizarre circumstances.

Though the story was never officially confirmed, reports emerged from Spain on deadline day that three people claiming to be United officials arrived at the Spanish league’s offices in Madrid to pay the buyout clause in full.

It was claimed that these men were hoaxers.

Herrera remained a target for the Red Devils even after David Moyes was axed by the club in April following a dismal season that say the Premier League champions finishing in a lowly seventh place.

The midfielder is Louis van Gaal's first United signing, after the Dutch manager, who is currently in Brazil coaching the Netherlands, gave the deal his blessing.

A product of the Zaragoza academy, Herrera moved to Athletic Bilbao in 2011. He made 94 appearances for the club, scoring seven goals.

United fans will be hope the signing is the first of many, after a catalogue of transfer failings last summer which saw the club miss out on major targets such as Cesc Fàbregas, Leighton Baines and Thiago Alcantara.

David Moyes’ sole signing was Marouane Fellaini, who he purchased from his former club, Everton on deadline day for £27.5m.

Fellaini has so struggled with life at Old Trafford and there have even been reports that he may be surplus to requirements under the new manager.

Last month, United failed with a £27m bid for Southampton’s Luke Shaw, who has just returned with the England squad from Brazil, and it is believed new manager Ronald Koeman is keen to keep the talented left-back at St Mary's.

Following England’s elimination from the World Cup, United have reportedly offered a renewed bid in the region of £34m for 18-year-old, with the teenagers set to earn around £100,000-a-week.

Images courtesy of La Liga with thanks