Manchester United reportedly came within touching distance of signing Watford winger Ismaila Sarr last summer.
That’s according to the Championship side’s former technical director Filippo Giraldi, who spoke exclusively on the ‘Here We Go’ podcast.
It’s no secret that United desperately wanted to bring in a new winger last summer, with Borussia Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho identified as the number-one target.
However, after talks for Sancho failed due to the Black and Yellow’s whopping demands, the club’s hierarchy appeared to turn their attention to Watford’s Sarr.
Although back in the Championship this season, last season saw the Senegal international burst onto the scene.
According to Giraldi, United were on the brink of bringing in £40m rated Sarr but similarly to Sancho, talks broke down at the last minute.
When asked for the finer details on the transfer saga, the former chief (as quoted by Daily Mail) said: “We were extremely close, I was personally negotiating with them.
“We weren’t able to reach an agreement. And I think Ismaila is very young, he will arrive for sure.
“He missed probably an opportunity, but I think also for his football to stay here and get 10 goals and 10 assists, he’s deciding the league. I think for Watford in the condition they are at the moment it’s luck he stayed.
“I love Ismaila because he has the ability to affect the game every time he plays, and that’s quite rare.
“You see fast wingers becoming more and more important in physical leagues like the Premier League. I remember last year against Manchester United and Liverpool, he was the one with Gerard Deulofeu on the other side affecting the game and deciding the game every time.
“This type of player are players you have to try to maximise and protect them as much as you can.”
Sarr is once again enjoying a fine campaign and after racking up 18 direct goal involvements in 33 Championship games, the exciting attacker is undoubtedly playing a huge role in winning his side promotion back to the big time.
United are believed to still be keen on Sancho, however, should a move fail again this summer, could we see the club revisit the possibility of signing Sarr instead? – Let us know what you think in the comments.