Inter Milan winger, Ivan Perisic, has admitted he was “really close” to a transfer to Manchester United, but changed his mind at the last moment.
Perisic is Jose Mourinho’s long-term target and a deal was close to coming to fruition in 2017.
Mourinho has made no secret of his admiration for the winger and the 29-year-old was planning on putting pen to paper, when a £50million bid arrived from the Red Devils.
But his manager Luciano Spalletti’s arrival at the San Siro convinced him to stay, despite being “flattered” by the interest from United.
“It’s true that an offer from Manchester United was on the table – I was really close to leaving Inter.
“When Luciano Spalletti arrived, he showed tremendous desire to keep me in the team and made it clear he didn’t want to lose me. That was very encouraging, and I haven’t regretted my decision to stay at Inter. In football, small details in these situations are key.
“Admiration from a coach like Mourinho is definitely something that flattered me. It’s confirmation of hard work and good performances.
“When you’re praised by a guy like Mourinho – the manager of a huge club like Man United – it’s difficult not to think about such an offer. I’m glad he has a high opinion of me. These things motivate me to work and train hard, to achieve the best performances,” Perisic told FourFourTwo.