Galatasaray midfielder Wesley Sneijder has revealed that former club Inter Milan blocked his desired move to Manchester United before the Dutchman signed for the Turkish giants.
Sneijder, capped on 90 occasions for Holland, joined Galatasaray for a knock-down £8.5 million, a bargain considering his status as one of the best in the world in the summer of 2010.
Sir Alex Ferguson was a known admirer of the former Madrid player and Sneijder claims United firmed up their interest with a €20 million offer for the creative midfielder.
“Manchester United had offered €20million [£17million] for me and the club rejected it,” said Sneijder.
Sneijder had been targeted by United for over 18 months with transfers rumoured to be close in both the Summer window of 2011 and the January 2012 transfer window.
The Dutch international was many peoples choice for the 2009/10 Ballon d’Or after a sparkling campaign for both club and country, culminating in a World Cup final appearance and Champions League winners medal.
A £35 million deal to bring him to Old Trafford was apparently very close to completion, with Sir Alex Ferguson keen to source a replacement for Paul Scholes.
For whatever reason, the deal never came to fruition with Sneijder eventually joining up with Galatasaray 12 months later.
“I wanted to go to United but Inter didn’t let me. And then they asked me to lower my wage. I didn’t accept it,” the Dutchman continued.
“That’s why they put me in the stands. I have had problems with presidents at both Inter Milan and Real Madrid.”
For many, the move to the Turkish outfit came as a large surprise with Tottenham, Liverpool and nouveau-riche Anzhi all reportedly interested in Sneijder.
United’s interest in the player is perhaps logical due to their apparent shortage in midfield with Darren Fletcher ruled out, Paul Scholes looking jaded and long-term doubts over Anderson.
It does however seem a little unlikely that United and Sir Alex Ferguson would splash out on a Dutchman approaching 30 with a poor injury record. Wait, what am I saying?