After confirming his transfer to Manchester United earlier today, speculation about Mason Mount's shirt number at the club began almost immediately. The England midfielder has signed for big money from Chelsea and will reportedly earn £250,000 per week at Old Trafford. Given the numbers involved, it's safe to say that Mount has been lined up for an important shirt number at the club.
Shortly after the announcement was made by Manchester United, they revealed that the England midfielder would be taking on one of the most iconic shirt numbers at the club. As of next season, Mason Mount will wear the number seven shirt at United, a number that is steeped in history and expectation at Old Trafford.
It's unclear at this point whether Mount requested the iconic shirt upon signing for the club or if Erik Ten Hag made the decision himself.
Inspired by our past no.7s 💫
Ready to write his own story 📖#MUFC
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) July 7, 2023
Mount wore the number 19 shirt at Chelsea and that number is currently occupied by Raphael Varane at Manchester United which could have contributed to the decision to give him the number seven shirt.
Manchester United number sevens before Mason Mount
In taking the number seven shirt at Manchester United, Mount is taking a shirt that has weighed too heavy on the backs of many players in recent years. The likes of Memphis Depay, Angel di Maria and Alexis Sanchez all flopped spectacularly at Manchester United with the number 7 shirt on their back which has led to many labelling the shirt as a curse.
Going back further, however, the shirt is steeped in tradition with some of the club's best-ever players donning the iconic shirt. Here are some of the names that Mount will be looking to live up to with the number seven on his back.
As a winger in the 1960s, Best also often wore the number 11 shirt but many of his most iconic moments came with the 7 on his back. Best is widely regarded as one of the greatest footballers of all time and got the ball rolling for the famous number seven shirt at Old Trafford.
Dubbed “Captain Marvel” by the Old Trafford faithful due to his majestic performances in midfield, Bryan Robson was the epitome of what every Manchester United player should be. Tireless in terms of effort, elite in terms of ability and ruthless in terms of decision-making.
For many Manchester United fans, Eric Cantona is the most important player in the club's history – certainly in the Premier League era anyway. Sir Alex Ferguson signed Cantona from Leeds in 1992 for £1.5m and he transformed the club from pretenders to serial winners.
After Eric Cantona left the club in 1997, David Beckham was handed the number 7 shirt by Sir Alex Ferguson. Beckham rapidly became the poster boy for not only Manchester United but football worldwide and was the first player to turn his shirt number into a brand. Aside from that, Beckham was a phenomenal footballer and came second in the Ballon d'Or in 1999.
Cristiano Ronaldo was the last player (during his first stint at the club) to have lived up to the expectation placed on those who wear the number seven shirt. Ronaldo went from a skinny teenager to the best player on the planet during his first six years at Old Trafford.