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Solskjaer bemoans staggering Man Utd triple transfer miss that could’ve toppled Liverpool, Man City

Former Man Utd boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, Real Madrid star Jude Bellingham

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer failed to sign Jude Bellingham for Man Utd

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has revealed the three players he would have loved to sign for Man Utd, including Real Madrid ace Jude Bellingham.

Man Utd were hoping to land Bellingham in 2020 after being hugely impressed by his rapid rise at Championship club Birmingham City. The central midfielder even travelled to hold talks with Man Utd chiefs, only to reject their advances in favour of a move abroad.

Ultimately, it was Borussia Dortmund who won the race for Bellingham, as they convinced the Englishman they could provide the best platform for him to develop and shine.

Dortmund paid £25million for Bellingham and he would go on to establish himself as one of the best young players in the world there before joining Real Madrid in a £115m deal last summer.

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But things could have been far different for both Bellingham and Man Utd. During an appearance on The Overlap, Solskjaer has provided the inside track on Man Utd’s negotiations for the England star.

“Jude, he was in the building [Carrington],” the former striker admitted. “I was there, Sir Alex Ferguson was there, Bryan Robson and Eric Cantona were all there that day.

“We all spoke to him and sold it as well as we could, but he knew what he wanted, x amount of minutes in the first team.

“He was the most mature 17-year-old I’ve ever met – he had it all planned out.”

Solskjaer discusses failed Man Utd swoop for Haaland

Bellingham is not the only player Man Utd missed out on before they turned into a superstar. Solskjaer went on to speak about both Manchester City striker Erling Haaland and Arsenal midfielder Declan Rice.

“I had Haaland in Molde, for two seasons,” Solskjaer added. “The summer before I got here [to Man Utd], I rang the club and said, ‘You’ve got to sign this boy. He’ll be top class’.

“That was June, July 2018, and they said no. They had enough reports on players. Then I became the caretaker manager, and we’d sold Haaland to RB Salzburg.

“I tell the club straight away to buy him while he has a release clause. We knew that then, and no one else would’ve paid the money – €20m, it would’ve been a bargain.

“It was the club’s decision to not go for it then. We never made bids or went in for him, until after he started scoring for Salzburg.

“By then, everyone was there. His release clause then was still good – €60m.”

Man Utd failing to sign Bellingham and Haaland has been documented before, but Solskjaer has raised eyebrows by also discussing his admiration for Rice.

Former manager ‘really likes’ Declan Rice

“I really like him [Rice] as a player,” the Norwegian remarked. “We’ve discussed him a few times and I think we would’ve done well with him in midfield.

“His legs, covering the pitch, and I think he improved a lot on his playmaking as well. Obviously, he would’ve cost some money, but we could’ve and should’ve gone for him.”

Man Utd signing at least two of Bellingham, Haaland or Rice would have gone a long way in helping them get close to the Premier League’s leading clubs, which are currently Liverpool, Man City and Arsenal.

Signing all three could have made the Red Devils England’s best team, as that is how good they have performed this season at their respective clubs.

Instead, new Man Utd part-owner Sir Jim Ratcliffe will have to usher in several top-class signings to make the club truly competitive again. TEAMtalk has already revealed which Premier League ace is likely to arrive at Man Utd first this summer.

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