Manchester United midfielder Bruno Fernandes has admitted that Tottenham Hotspur were close to signing him during the transfer window last summer.
The Portugal international moved to Old Trafford from Sporting Lisbon during the January transfer window for £68 million but could have been a Spurs player had the North Londoners agreed to the demands of the Portuguese giants six months earlier.
Former Tottenham boss Mauricio Pochettino was keen to land Fernandes, and Jose Mourinho renewed interest in him when he became the side’s new head coach.
A move didn’t work out in January as the 25-year-old had already made up his mind at the time, penning a five-and-a-half year deal with the Red Devils.
“The first club that was close to signing me was Tottenham with Pochettino, but I don’t know, maybe they thought the amount Sporting wanted was too much so in that moment Sporting decided they don’t want to sell,” Fernandes told former Serbian player Mario Gjurovski in an Instagram Live video (via Mirror).
“Tottenham came in the summer but Manchester was in January. Maybe Tottenham came again in January, but when I knew Manchester was interested I just wanted to talk to Manchester. Manchester was my dream team in England so I am happy because I have the chance to go to a team that I always dreamed about you know.
“At that time (last summer) it was Tottenham that was closer to me. There were other teams from France and one team from the Spanish league, but for me, when I talked, the first team was Manchester.”
Fernandes left Portugal after scoring 13 goals and registering 10 assists, and he added three more goals and four assists across all competitions to his season tally since arriving in the Premier League.
Spurs’ loss is Man. Utd’s gain given how easily the creative midfielder has hit the ground running in England, and he will keen to show Mourinho’s side what they have missed out on when both teams clash on June 19 at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium.