£13.8m United star almost joined Aston Villa in 2013, admits sporting director

Ajax

Daley Blind was on the radar of Aston Villa in the January of 2013.

Manchester United have spent plenty of money this summer, their final permanent arrival of the summer being Daley Blind.

They snapped up the Dutch international and Ajax captain for a £13.8 million fee. The utility man shone for his country at the World Cup, where of course he was being managed by his now club coach Louis van Gaal.

But it could have been different for the 24-year-old. Ajax director of football and former Arsenal winger Marc Overmars has been defending the departure of the player to Ajax Life - insisting they had no option but to sell the player and allow him to pursue his dream.

But he also revealed that in an alternate universe, Blind might have been wearing the claret and blue of Aston Villa.

Overmars admitted that the player, during a period when he was struggling for form, could have been flogged to the Premier League club:

"One and a half years ago Daley was still jeered and we were also hesitating over whether we should perhaps sell him to Aston Villa for a nice sum or look during the summer break at how he would develop, knowing that his contract which expire.

"When you see what he has gone through and what he has overcome, then you can't deny him this opportunity..."

Blind is set to feature for the club for the first time tomorrow when they take on QPR, with Marcod Rojo and potentially Radamel Falcao also set to feature. So Villa fans can get a glimpse of what might have been there midfield general tomorrow afternoon.

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