Serie A side Roma have passed up the opportunity to sign Manchester United midfielder Nemanja Matic this summer, claims a report.
Matic watched from the bench in Gdansk on Wednesday night as United were beaten in a dramatic penalty shootout by Villarreal, who lifted the Europa League trophy. The Serbia midfielder was an unused substitute as United struggled to create chances against a well-drilled Villarreal side. The 32-year-old has made 36 appearances though in all competitions this season.
He also has two years remaining on his contract, but he has been linked with a move to Roma.
The Italians have recently appointed Jose Mourinho as their new boss and he will take charge this summer.
Last week the Gazzetta Dello Sport claimed Roma were keen on a move for Matic under Mourinho’s instruction. The midfielder was said to be open to the idea of heading to the Italian capital, having played under Mourinho previously.
Matic played under Mourinho at Chelsea. Mourinho then signed him for United in 2017, when the Portuguese boss was managing the Old Trafford club.
Mourinho referred to Matic as one of “my guys” when the midfield enforcer joined him in Manchester.
“Nemanja is a Manchester United player and a Jose Mourinho player,” said Mourinho. “He represents everything we want in a footballer – loyalty, consistency, ambition, team player.”
So it was no surprise when talk of a move to follow Mourinho to Italy emerged.
However, TuttoMercatoWeb, via Sport Witness, now claim Roma have pulled the plug on a deal, despite Matic’s interest.
They have said “no to Matic” due to the cost of any prospective deal.
Corriere dello Sport say United are looking for €10m for Matic, while the player’s personal terms are around €7m net per season.
That is apparently “considered too high” by the Giallorossi. So Matic will not be reunited with Mourinho for a third time.
Meanwhile, Marcus Rashford has promised that United are ‘close’ to ending their hunt for silverware after revealing he has been sent around 70 racial slurs in the wake of the Europa League final loss to Villarreal.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were held 1-1 in Gdansk by underdogs Villarreal, who triumphed 11-10 on penalties after David De Gea’s spot-kick was saved. Rashford faced the media after the match and received a torrent of racist abuse when the United forward opened up his phone.
“At least 70 racial slurs on my social accounts counted so far,” the United forward wrote on Twitter.
“For those working to make me feel any worse than I already do, good luck trying.
“I’m more outraged that one of the abusers that left a mountain of monkey emojis in my DM is a maths teacher with an open profile. He teaches children!! And knows that he can freely racially abuse without consequence…”