The agent of Man United midfielder Paul Pogba has revealed that the French international could have been plying his trade for Chelsea instead.
Mino Raiola oversaw the former Juventus star’s switch to Old Trafford this past summer, but has revealed that his client came close to returning to England a year earlier with a completely different destination.
As noted by The Sun, Pogba completed a world-record £89m transfer to United this summer, but while Jose Mourinho was still in charge at Chelsea after winning the Premier League title, he wanted Pogba to join his side at Stamford Bridge to help them build on that success.
However, Raiola blocked the transfer and explained his reasons for doing so: “Paul could have left [Juventus] last year because Mourinho, then at Chelsea, really wanted him,” he said, as reported by The Sun.
“But Juventus and I had an agreement: win the league title and the Champions League, then he can go.”
The Bianconeri did indeed win Serie A, but failed to replicate that success in Europe. Nevertheless, they ultimately agreed that the time was right for Pogba to exit, with the money on offer likely to have been a determining factor, and therefore he eventually completed his return to Manchester late in the transfer window.
Meanwhile, it will be a case of ifs and maybes with regards to his possible move to Chelsea, as the club went on to struggle last season in the defence of their title and finished 10th in the league.
It led to the sacking of Mourinho too with the Portuguese tactician going on to replace Louis van Gaal in the hotseat at Old Trafford, and although he had to wait to sign his top target, he eventually got him with United and will hope he can play an integral role in their bid for success this year.
It’s been a relatively slow start for Pogba, with the 23-year-old scoring just once in seven appearances for the Red Devils in all competitions.