10 Man United transfer deals hijacked since 2000
Manchester United have missed out on Atletico Madrid’s lethal man Antoine Griezmann, but this is not the only player United have failed to capture. Manchester United have a long history of seeing their transfer deals get hijacked by more decisive clubs.
Here are 10 of the biggest Manchester United transfers that got hijacked by other clubs since the year 2000,
1. Ronaldinho; Fee £ 23.47
The transfer had shaped well with United seemly so luckily to get Ronaldo from PSG but Barcelona and and their Brazilian contacts came in and secured the player’s heart. United were left to look on enviously as Ronaldinho took the Catalans to the top of world football.
2. Arjen Robben, Fee £12.1m
Robben, having met with Sir Alex Ferguson, a meeting which went very well according to the player, it appeared Sir Alex Ferguson had identified a flying winger in 2004 and probably a true replacement for David Beckham. Unfortunately United wasted time haggling over a fee and Chelsea came in and blew them away, securing the dynamic Dutchman.
3. John Obi Mikel; Fee: £12m
Manchester United actually signed John Obi Mikel in 2005. He even had a press conference in the shirt, big smiles and everything. Then later he vanished, whisked away to London by his agent John Shittu. Mikel then claimed he never wanted to sign for United and instead wanted to play for Chelsea.
4. Michael Ballack, Free transfer
The Red Devils had been linked with Michael Ballack for years, and in 2016 with his contract running down, it seems they were finally landing their long term target. Chelsea came in and snatched him.
5. Aaron Ramsey; Fee £4.8m
Manchester United had spotted Aaron Ramsey and marked him as the future possible star of their midfield and had a bid accepted for Welsh man. However when he came to Carrington, Sir Alex was on holiday and club captain Gary Neville showed him around. Meanwhile Arsene Wenger took the time to greet him personally. Ramsey felt more catered to by Arsenal and signed there.
6. Eden Hazard; Fee £32m
United’s transfer hijacking looked to have ceased but in 2012, The Red Devils wanted Eden Hazard from Lille to help them but he opted to sign for the European Champions instead. Since then, the Belgium star has won 2 Premier League titles while United have won just one.
7. Lucas Fee £35m
United went after the Brazilian sensation Lucas after missing out on Hazard. They were in a pole position to secure his services but PSG moved quick and secured their man. Sir Alex Ferguson played the frustrated man, bemoaning the rise of transfer fees, frustrated at missing out two wingers in one window.
8. Thiago Fee £20m
Spanish giants Barcelona decided to sell the future of their midfield and United were at the head of the queue. David Moyes, the United boss by then blew the chance, took time debating whether or not to sign the best central in the world, Bayern Munich moved in, Pep Guardiola smiled at Thiago and it was all over.
9. Pedro Fee: £21.4m
With Louis van Gaal managing United, he need goals and pace out wide, Barcelona were selling Pedro, who could fit in United style of player. Too slow, Chelsea sped ahead and got the deal done in a handful of days.
10. Renato Sanches Fee £27+ £35m
United were in pole position but manager José Mourinho wasn’t appointed in time to push the deal through and Bayern dropped a mountain of cash in Benfica’s lap and secured the player (who went on to be Portugal’s most exciting player as they won Euro 2016).