Legendary Brazil star Ronaldinho has revealed he was 48 hours away from signing for Manchester United back in 2003.
With Sir Alex Ferguson scouring the market for a big-name replacement for Real Madrid-bound David Beckham, United turned to the then-PSG star.
Ronaldinho was cleared for a big-money departure from the Ligue 1 giants at the time and Beckham had initially been wanted by incoming Barca president Sandro Rosell.
However, after it became apparent that Beckham was heading for Real, Rosell and Barca turned to Ronaldinho – much to United’s frustrations at the time.
Now, in an interview with FourFourTwo. Ronaldinho has lifted the lid on the talks he had with United and has explained just how close to came to signing for the Red Devils.
“It almost happened. It was a matter of 48 hours but Sandro Rosell had told me way before I got the offer: “If I become Barca president, will you come?” I said yes,” he revealed.
“It was only a matter of details with United when Rosell called to say he was going to win the elections there. And I had promised to him that I’d play for Barca… It was a quick negotiation.
“I told the English I had chosen Barca. It was the right choice. Brazilians have always loved Barça. We have a history there. Off the pitch it is like nowhere else in Europe, so we are always happy playing there. I miss Barcelona a lot.”
Ronaldinho was also the subject of an ambitious bid from Blackburn in 2011 following the takeover by the Venkys.
He was at Milan at the time before moving back to Brazil to join Flamengo but confirmed he did hold talks with Blackburn.
Ronaldinho added: “About Blackburn: we talked to them, but I wanted to come back home to Brazil.”
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