Ex-Man Utd scout reveals how he wanted to sign midfielder whilst at Liverpool

Manchester United ex-chief scout Javier Ribalta says he regrets not taking Emre Can to Old Trafford.

Ribalta worked at Juventus between 2012 and 2017, before moving to United last year and subsequently becoming Zenit’s sporting director earlier in the summer.

“From my Juventus years, I’d say [Josema] Gimenez from Atletico Madrid,” continued the Catalan to Tuttosport, as per Football-Italia.

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A fine player I have always wanted at United, though how good is he without Diego Godin by his side? That may seem unfair but it’s a question worth asking. The problem at United is we don’t see enough consistency in team selections with centre-backs being switched on a weekly basis.

“As for my time in Manchester, I was only there for a year but I’d have liked to sign Emre Can and [Leon] Goretzka on free transfers.

“I’d never been able to cross paths with Pogba because when I was going to Manchester for meetings with Mourinho, the players were never at the training ground.

“Who is most feasible out of Pogba, Rabiot and Marcelo? Marcelo. The other two seem impossible to me.”

It was not a good sign when Ribalta left United after a year. Sources close to Stretty News were of the view his role became limited and he was not given the same permissions to operate like he was at Juve.

That is one of my fears about the Director of Football role. It’s great in theory but will United role it out properly or fill it with restrictions, so that Ed Woodward retains the majority of power within the club?

Moreover, we can’t ignore the fact he wanted to bring Can from Liverpool to United. The German left Anfield this summer for Juve to further his career.

Goretzka, on the other hand, is a 23-year-old midfield, who recently left Schalke for Bayern Munich. He was wanted by Liverpool too, before opting for the Bundesliga champions instead. There is no indication that he would have preferred United over Bayern, but Rabalta clearly wanted to make it happen.

More Stories Bayern Munich Emre Can Javier Ribalta Juventus Leon Goretzka Liverpool Manchester United Schalke Zenit St Petersburg