According to Sky Sports sources, Manchester United made no attempt to steal Pep Guardiola from under the noses of rivals Manchester City.
The Spaniard confirmed last month that he would be leaving Bayern Munich at the end of the season, and intimated that his next role would be in England.
After weeks of speculation, City boss Manuel Pellegrini confirmed that he would be leaving the Etihad in his press conference on Monday, with a club statement following shortly after to confirm that Guardiola would be appointed his successor in the summer.
While the statement suggested that City had been in talks with the former Barcelona boss “in recent weeks”, it is believed that United had been prepared for the announcement for months, as noted by Sky Sports.
As a result, the Red Devils avoided fighting a losing battle and resigned themselves to missing out on the 45-year-old who had been heavily linked to the City job for some time given the connections with former Barcelona officials currently within the club.
Meanwhile, it remains to be seen whether or not United are forced into action this summer, with Louis van Gaal currently having one more year after this season remaining on his contract.
The Dutch tactician has come under intense scrutiny this season for the lack of goals, entertainment and success that his side have produced, as they continue to sit five points adrift of Tottenham in the fourth and final Champions League qualification spot.
United host Stoke City at Old Trafford on Tuesday night, and they will hope to bounce back from their loss to Southampton in their last league outing while Van Gaal would have been boosted by their 3-1 win over Derby County in the FA Cup last Friday.