Manchester United legend Paul Scholes has revealed just how close the club came to sealing the transfer of Ronaldinho, only for him to reject them at the last minute.
The Brazilian is considered one of the greats of the modern era, and was a joy to watch during his Barcelona days in particular, leaving Man Utd fans to think about what could’ve been if he’d ended up at Old Trafford for that period.
Scholes says he and other United players were convinced the deal was close to going through, only to find out that Ronaldinho had chosen Barcelona instead.
Rather amusingly, the former England international says that this then prompted Red Devils players to target him and kick him when the teams later played in a pre-season friendly game.
One can certainly understand United players feeling they wanted revenge after being turned down in this fashion, and, as ever, it’s nice to see how refreshingly honest Scholes is about these things!
“He was away on pre-season and we were as a close as announcing him and giving him a number but I think he ended up changing his mind at the last minute and signing for Barcelona,” Scholes said, as quoted by the Manchester Evening News.
“It’s strange really because we played Barcelona on that pre-season tour.
“We were all excited – Ronaldinho, what a player! I think he was coming from PSG at the time and we were all going to get to play with him and he’s going to bring something special.
“Almost like what Eric Cantona brought to the team then three days later, we’re playing against him and all trying to kick him because he didn’t sign for us.
“It was disappointing but I was lucky enough to play with some great players and he’d have just been another unbelievable player I’d had played with but it just never happened.”