Ivan Perisic has revealed that Jose Mourinho personally called him when in charge of Manchester United to discuss a potential transfer.
The Croatian winger, who traded Inter Milan for Bayern Munich this summer, had been linked with United for an eternity, although a move never came to fruition.
Now, the 30-year-old has confirmed that United did make a move for him – although he only found out why it had collapsed two years after the deal fell through.
“How close was I going there? Very close,” he told The Athletic.
“It was an amazing thing for me when Jose called me. It was difficult to say no to him.
“It was painful for me. But I don’t want to go into the details. I only found out myself the real reasons two years later.”
His move to Bayern meant a return to the Bundesliga, where he had previously played for Borussia Dortmund under current Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp – a manager whose methods he credits as what gave him his understanding of the modern game.
“I wasn’t ready for it,” he said. “I was not used to defending from the front. I didn’t even know that it was a two-way game.
“Jurgen taught me modern football. I have to say thank you to him for that. We won the double in the first year but when I saw that my situation didn’t change in the second season, I wanted to leave.
“I told him I wanted to be regular starter, and he said: ‘I respect your decision, we will find a solution’.”
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