Edinson Cavani has revealed that he could have ended up at Manchester United 10 years prior to his eventual arrival at Old Trafford in 2020, with the Red Devils expressing interest during his time at Palermo.
Back then, the Uruguayan striker was just starting out in European football and showcasing predatory instincts that have made him a prolific option for the likes of Napoli and Paris Saint-Germain.
A move to England was finally made after dropping into the free agent pool at 33 years of age, with a Premier League challenge taken on a decade after the prospect of making such a switch first materialised.
Cavani, who joined Napoli on an initial loan agreement in 2010, has told Inside United on past interest from Manchester: “Just imagine it!
“I can’t remember exactly what happened. I do remember there was talk about one or two different teams, but hey, if I’d had that opportunity [to join United], I would have taken it, of course I would, without giving it a second thought.
“I don’t remember definitively if that was the case. But what I do remember is that I was due to travel to the World Cup in South Africa, and during that tournament, I had a conversation with Napoli, and well, told them if they had faith in me and wanted me to go there, trust and confidence are worth a lot to me, and so I made my decision and after Palermo I made the move to Napoli.”
The now 34-year-old frontman hit 37 goals for Palermo through 117 appearances, having made a move to Italy from Danubio in January 2007.
He would go on to find the target on 104 occasions at Napoli, earning himselfa big-money switch to PSG in the process.
A record-setting spell in France delivered 200 goals in 301 games, with nobody to have graced the books at Parc des Princes able to better that haul.
Seven efforts have been added to his career tally since joining United, while 51 strikes have been recorded while earning 118 caps for his country.
Cavani is sparking talk of another move being made at present, as no extension option has been taken up by United on the one-year contract that he penned upon his arrival.
Boca Juniors are being mooted as one potential landing spot, with there a chance that another fresh start will be embraced by an experienced performer.
Cavani has never shied away from a challenge and has seen that approach reward him with opportunities to turn out alongside some iconic figures.
He added on his exploits to date: “Yes, I’ve been lucky enough to have played alongside some great footballers. And when you do play with top players, it allows you to grow and improve.
“I’ve always had that desire to improve and develop my game, and to take things from one player or another. If I were to start listing each of their attributes, I reckon it would be an awfully long interview because they all have their own individual qualities.
“You had a player like Zlatan [Ibrahimovic] who was highly competitive. He was always up for the fight and he really hated to lose. None of us like losing but he has always shown that even more than most, through his character and how he is.
“I played with Ney [Neymar] also, as well as with Kylian [Mbappe]. Everyone knows about Ney, don’t they… he has magic in his feet. Kylian has huge skill and technique as well as great pace. They are really top-class players.”
Source : goal.com