How Manchester United Could Have Lined-Up If Rumours Came True
There are three things in life that are certain: death, taxes and Manchester United‘s incredible knack of being linked with every half decent player in world football.
From the minute that transfer window opens to the minute it slams shut, It’s a never ending circle of gossip and rumours.
If you open a newspaper gossip column, Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side will feature among the list front, line and centre.
In years gone by the likes of Antoine Griezmann, James Rodriguez and Gareth Bale have been linked with a move to Old Trafford for the seventh consecutive year.
It must be a real rollercoaster of emotions for all you United supporters out there.
To celebrate the weird and wonderful transfer rumours involving Manchester United over the years, we’ve put together a ‘what could have been’ starting XI of players who have been strongly linked with a move to Old Trafford.
Hold on to your hats.
The Atletico shot-stopper has been David de Gea’s like-for-like replacement for years, according to reports. He may have an £88.4 million buy-out clause written into his current contract, but United were apparently ready to sign the 24-year-old on a number of occasions.
Back in February 2017, The Manchester Evening News claimed that the club had agreed a deal ‘in principle’ to sign Benfica right-back Nelson Semedo. It was claimed that the Reds had a £35m offer for the 23-year-old accepted but he eventually joined Barcelona.
This was a rumour that was swirled around for months.
Sir Alex Ferguson was on the verge of signing Varane in 2011, but Los Blancos beat them to it.
Eight years down the line, the World Cup winning defender has been linked with a move to Old Trafford on several occasions. Most recently, gossip has emerged in the past 24 hours that United have made their first move after making an initial enquiry.
It was claimed earlier back in 2017 that Jose Mourinho made PSG centre-back Marquinhos his top defensive target but he didn’t get his wishes. Sound familiar?
They were ‘confident that they would seal a £50million deal’ for the Brazilian, but a deal for Benfica defender Victor Lindelof happened instead.
Manchester United or Manchester City? It was on the cards that Pep Guardiola would win this transfer battle, but at one point, Jose Mourinho was apparently plotting a £60 million move for the Monaco full-back. Did it happen? No. Was it just another ‘reports from France suggest’? Yes.
This inclusion might stand out from the rest, but I just couldn’t leave him out.
Wesley Sneijder was linked with Manchester United for five consecutive transfer windows from 2011 onwards. He was even rumoured to be heading to Old Trafford in 2016, despite his age. I’m swear he wrote a few of those gossip columns.
Wesley was never one to shy away from the links, as well. The ultimate tease.
At one point, the former Monaco midfielder was one of the most likely in this list to actually join Manchester United. It was heavily reported that the defensive midfielder was on his way to Old Trafford, especially a couple of years ago, but Liverpool eventually won the transfer battle.
Do you think he would have been a good addition to United’s current squad?
If there’s a number one contender for the World Heavyweight championship of transfer rumours, then Gareth Bale is on the verge of stealing Wesley Sneijder’s crown.
He was most recently linked with a move in the January transfer window, but rumours still appear on an almost daily basis.
Ok Diario once claimed that United agreed a deal in principle to sign James Rodriguez, but that never materialised, did it.
In May 2017, it was reported that the Colombian player would be announced as a Manchester United player ‘by the weekend’ – but we are still awaiting that deal.
A serial offender when it comes to a rumoured move to Old Trafford.
The Brazilian apparently told pals in 2017 that Manchester United are willing to spend almost £170 million on him and at one point, United were set to meet his £140m release clause after the 23-year-old’s contract talks stalled with Barcelona.
This potential transfer was once plastered all over gossip columns from month to month, but it never came to light.
Where do we start with this one.
From rejecting a call from ‘Jose’ in a Huawei’s advert to apparently flirting with the club on Instagram, it looked like a deal was all but certain but he soon signed a new contract at Atletico.
This rumour dragged on for way to long. He once claimed there was a “six out of 10 chance” the move to old Trafford would happen, but now it’s now a definite ‘one out of 10’.