Daniel Bachmann has opened up on what it was like to be targeted by Manchester United this summer, with the Watford goalkeeper outlining what he would have expected at Old Trafford.
Manchester United were on the lookout for a new backup goalkeeper during the summer transfer window. Fourth-choice Lee Grant retired at the end of his contract, before second-choice Dean Henderson left on loan for Nottingham Forest in early July.
A number of names were under consideration to provide competition for David de Gea, alongside third-choice Tom Heaton. One of the more intriguing suggestions to emerge was Daniel Bachmann.
The Austria international had just been relegated with Watford, but he had an admirer in Ralf Rangnick, who was getting involved with Bachmann’s national team.
Ultimately, Rangnick ended his association with Manchester United, but their links with Bachmann continued. In the end, though, the 28-year-old remained with Watford for their return to the Championship.
Manchester United eventually went for Martin Dubravka as their new backup goalkeeper. They brought the Slovakia international in on loan from Newcastle United.
Bachmann, meanwhile, has regained his starting spot with Watford. He has played from the outset of each of their first eight matches in the current Championship season.
It probably justifies his stay at Vicarage Road, given that he would have played second fiddle to De Gea at Old Trafford.
Bachmann has now reflected on what happened in the summer, confirming there were plenty of talks between the parties.
He told LAOLA1: “There have been talks with Manchester United. That’s no secret.
“Of course, it’s great to be associated with such a club. It was also serious. There were negotiations between the clubs and of course between me and the clubs.
“In the end, however, I’m still a Watford player and I’m very happy about it. Because I play here regularly, bring in my performances and hopefully can play a role in the national team again.”
Daniel Bachmann knew he would have backed up David de Gea
Bachmann is well aware that he would not have been playing as frequently for Manchester United as he is for Watford. Still, he thinks he could have kept De Gea on his toes if called upon.
He explained: “If I had gone to Man Utd, then I would of course have been number two.
“That’s quite clear because in David de Gea they have a top goalkeeper who has been one of the best, if not the best, goalkeeper in the Premier League over the last 10 years.
“Of course, that doesn’t mean I would never have played if I went there. One does not exclude the other, because every goalkeeper can be replaced. And De Gea has also had a low before, during which he did not play for a while.
“That means I would not have gone to Manchester United just to sit on the bench. I would have come to training every day and tried to convince the coach to let me play. That’s very clear.
“Still, I’m glad it turned out the way it did for me. I just want to play football; that’s what I live for. I feel very comfortable and that is reflected on the pitch.”
There was no single reason why the move collapsed, rather a variety of factors. But Bachmann has confirmed the process lasted for around a month and a half.
Asked who called off the move, Bachmann replied: “Both sides. In the end, the famous overall package didn’t fit.
“It went back and forth for a relatively long time. The first contact was made at the end of May. It lasted until mid-July.
“It wasn’t like a club or I said no, you just couldn’t agree on anything. That happens in football.”
Meanwhile, De Gea has been ever present for Man Utd in the Premier League and Europa League so far.