Speaking on the latest edition of Fabrizio Romano’s ‘Here We Go podcast‘, former Watford technical director Filippo Giraldi revealed how close Manchester United were to signing Ismaila Sarr.
It was no secret that Manchester United were pursuing a striker in the summer transfer window, with that man eventually being Edinson Cavani, proving that Odion Ighalo’s loan arrival was nothing more than a stop-gap.
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While Sarr was a player who was being continually linked with a move to the Premier League last summer, with Watford having been relegated to the Championship, a transfer never materialised, with the 23-year-old staying with the Hornets.
Filippo Giraldi, former technical director at Vicarage Road, has now offered insight into how close Sarr was to signing and sealing a move to Manchester United. Speaking on the ‘Here We Go podcast’, he revealed:
“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.”
The Sun, who have also covered this quotes by Giraldi, claim that the deal would have been worth £40M.
Perhaps Man United will revive their interest in the Senegalese attacker in the future, but for now, it’s a matter of what could have been for both parties.