The champions brought in David Moyes’s No1 target Marouane Fellaini and managed to retain the heavyweight services of Wayne Rooney who had flirted with a move to Chelsea.

Supporters though wanted more.

It is understood that Manchester United did not want to be rushed into the wrong signings or what they considered overpriced signings like Ander ­Herrera. They expect to be busier in the next two windows not necessarily January but certainly next summer.

However frustrating in the short term for fans who understandably want the team strengthened the club’s long-term commitment to Moyes means they take a more phlegmatic longer view.

The club now have time to work with Moyes establishing his targets.

He will be given “patience and money” to build his squad according to a United source. The champions are actively scouting a left-back a high-class centre-back and a central midfielder (a process that has been ongoing since 2007).

“This was always going to be a difficult transfer window with a new manager’’ the United source said “but the club wouldn’t change anything we did in the transfer window.

"We’ve kept Wayne our biggest concern. We’ve got a lot of talent in with Fellaini and Guillermo Varela [the Uruguayan full-back]. [Wilfried] Zaha is in the squad and Adnan [Januzaj] has been promoted. No one’s gone out. We’ve got a big squad.”

Big but not heavyweight argue many supporters.

With Moyes newly arrived there was an understanding inside Car­rington and Old Trafford that he should be given time to examine his squad.

He knew 15 or so of the United players well having set up Everton to face them over recent seasons but the club wanted Moyes to get to know the rest of the squad assessing their potential before making moves in the transfer market.

The champions have been perplexed at claims that they struggled to do deals such as the Herrera saga. The club have been tracking the Athlétic Bilbao midfielder for two years. After discussions at Old Trafford involving Moyes and chief executive Edward Woodward the club decided on a budget for a 24-year-old who has yet to represent Spain.

An inquiry was made to Bilbao and a £26 million bid reportedly offered but it became clear that United would get Herrera only through meeting the buy-out clause of £30.5 million.

“The fee was too much’’ the United source said. “He’s a very good player but not a top top player.”

United have huge resources to invest in players both in transfer fees and salaries but are determined to run the club as a business and not over-pay. They were particularly ­frustrated to miss out on Sir Alex ­Ferguson’s No 1 midfield target Lucas Moura in 2012 when the Brazilian went to Paris St-Germain for £40 million beyond United’s valuation.

Having decided that £30.5 million was above their valuation of Herrera United ended all interest in the player on Sunday. Contact was made with Athletic Bilbao and the player’s ­representatives to inform them of United’s decision.

The following day transfer deadline day United were bemused when three individuals purporting to represent the club appeared at the Spanish league offices on Monday afternoon looking to get involved in the deal.

“They were like fake sheikhs” the United source said. “They were ­nothing to do with us.’’

The so-called “imposters” were actually members of a Bilbao law firm reportedly used by the Spanish club to facilitate paperwork.

On Monday United received calls from middlemen saying they could get them Herrera. “They were just trying to insert themselves in the deal” the United source said. “They were trying to get an introduction fee. A lot of people tried to get involved.”