Former Man City manager “said no” to signing legendary Chelsea star and wouldn’t even give him a trial

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Former Manchester City manager Mark Hughes apparently turned down the chance to seal the transfer of legendary Brazilian centre-back Thiago Silva earlier in his career.

This is according to former City midfielder Stephen Ireland, who recalled that Robinho was keen for Hughes to sign Silva when he arrived at the Etihad Stadium.

Robinho was the first marquee signing of the Sheikh Mansour era at Man City, and it seems he was keen for some of his fellow Brazilians to join him in Manchester.

Ronaldo was another name he spoke about, while Silva is one Ireland can’t believe Hughes turned down, after seeing the incredible career he’s ended up having.

Now at Chelsea, Silva spent his peak years at AC Milan and Paris Saint-Germain, and it’s clear he could have formed a rock-solid partnership with Vincent Kompany for a decade or more at City.

Thiago Silva was turned down by Manchester City

Apparently, however, Hughes didn’t want too many Brazilian players, and wouldn’t even give Silva a trial with the club.

Ireland exclusively told Ladbrokes: Fanzone: “I can remember when he came in, after a couple of days he told Mark Hughes to sign Ronaldo, who was a free agent at the time, and he also told him to sign Thiago Silva, because he was available for £2.5m… I think he was playing in Brazil at the time and would’ve been around 23. Mark Hughes said no, he said we had too many Brazilians in the team with Elano and Jo playing for us.

“I remember when Robinho was talking about it, I was just walking around the training complex just saying to anyone who’d listen, “imagine what it would be like if Ronaldo comes here? Imagine?!”

“He must’ve been up for it himself because otherwise I don’t think Robinho would’ve asked the question to Mark. When Mark went back to him and said no, Robinho said “right, bring them both in on trial. Bring them in for two weeks, they can come and stay with me, just give them two weeks”.

“We’re talking about Ronaldo and Thiago Silva… and Mark Hughes said no again!

“I just wanted to see Ronaldo in the flesh… and even Thiago Silva; imagine if he’d have signed for City? You’d have had him and Vincent Kompany at the back, could you imagine that?!”

Even though he’s now in the twilight of his career, Silva remains a key player for Chelsea, and proved a smart signing on a free transfer a few years ago.

More Stories Mark Hughes robinho Stephen Ireland Thiago Silva