Manchester United’s woes in the transfer market over the summer were all-too apparent, as Marouane Fellaini was the only new face arriving at Old Trafford following a frustrating off-season.
The giant Belgian’s arrival has been treated with widespread disdain from the club’s fanbase, with the lack of a world-class midfield addition the cause of anger for many.
However, despite all the talk of Cesc Fabregas, Thiago Alcantara and Ander Herrera moving to join David Moyes’ men, Italian enforcer Daniele De Rossi was another on United’s wishlist.
The experienced Italy international has been linked with Premier League switches in the past, with Manchester City and Chelsea accredited with an interest.
However, it has been confirmed by Roma boss Rudi Garcia that United made an enquiry about the player’s availability, but left it too late in the day to be able to faction a deal.
"In the summer we talked about his [De Rossi’s] future. He is from Rome, but there were some big clubs looking at him,” Garcia confirmed in an interview with L’Equipe.
"I told him that I could not lose him last minute, so we set a date after which no one would leave. That is exactly what happened.
"A few days after the first Serie A match of the season, Manchester United called the club and called him, but the date had passed and he didn't move."
Given that Roma’s first domestic fixture of the new season was on August 25th, it shows just how late in the day that United made an approach for De Rossi. This enquiry over the Italian’s availability was before a deal to sign Fellaini was in place, and as such further undermines the Belgian’s worth at Old Trafford.
United’s failings in the transfer market have been widely publicised, and Garcia’s revelations only serve as another example of the club’s ineptitude. If the Old Trafford side had not put all their eggs in the Fabregas basket and approached Roma earlier in the window, there was a very good chance that De Rossi would be wearing the red of United right now.
De Rossi has all the energy, will to win and experience to act as a real asset in a lightweight United midfield. If the club had acted sooner rather than leaving everything to the last minute, the champions could have a new world-class midfielder in their ranks rather than a player being doubted by the supporters.
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