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Manchester United negotiated signing of attacker for ‘almost a year’, admits President

According to SportWitness, Atalanta president Antonio Percassi has detailed how Manchester United’s move for Amad Diallo Traore came about in a lengthy interview with L’Eco di Bergamo.

Percassi states that the Serie A outfit’s negotiations with the Red Devils ‘lasted almost a year’, adding that ‘the details and the scenarios’ of the move are ‘crazy’.

The 67-year-old admitted that the offer United tabled for the 18-year-old was simply too good to ‘refuse’, with Fabrizio Romano reporting that Amad joins in a transfer worth up to €40m.

The Manchester outfit officially announced that the right-winger will join in January, with Romano suggesting that Amad waiting to receive an Italian passport is the reason for this.

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Manchester United announced four senior signings on Deadline Day.

Here’s what Atalanta’s head honcho said on the deal:

“The negotiation with Manchester lasted almost a year. The details and the scenarios are crazy. Meeting after meeting we learned unimaginable things.”

“This leads to the growth of the club and enriches the work of everyone, from the general manager, Umberto Marino, to the entire staff.”

“A few days after the Youth League game against Manchester City, the other Manchester contacted us. They had followed him, the real negotiation started. We went twice to England.”

“The text of the final agreement is a contractual masterpiece.”

“The professionals involved in the operation are of a high level. In terms of negotiations, we have learned a lot. And it is above all thanks to Luca’s work that we arrived at the final figures.”

SportWitness report that the Luca mentioned is likely Antonio’s son, Gianluca Percassi, who acts as Atalanta’s CEO.

Percassi admitted that the Red Devils tabled an offer that Atalanta simply ‘couldn’t refuse’:

“It was an operation we couldn’t refuse. If the boy becomes great, we will have recognition for a long time. If he’s not lucky, we’re protected.”

United fans will be interested to learn that it was the talent’s impressive performance in a UEFA Youth League tie against cross-town rivals Manchester City that really kickstarted their interest in the ace.

Amad started to break into Atalanta’s first-team last season, the attacker scored when he made his his Serie A debut off the bench last October, with the ace making two more outings as a sub since.

Amad, who was born in the Ivory Coast and moved to Italy at a young age (perhaps explaining the passport and work permit formalities holding up the deal), has been on the bench for the side’s three Serie A games this season, but has yet to be called on.

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