Sir Alex Ferguson Wanted To Sign Player Before Beating Him In Historic Treble Campaign
Sir Alex Ferguson wanted to sign Gianluca Pagliuca before Manchester United knocked his Inter Milan side out of the Champions League en route to winning a historic treble.
Legendary Italian goalkeeper Pagliuca was part of the Inter side United beat in the quarter finals but things could have been different. for him.
Pagliuca could very well have been part of that all-conquering United side as he claims the Red Devils tried to sign him beforehand but Inter knocked back their approach straight away.
"In 1997, when I returned to the national team, Manchester United asked about me," he told La Gazzetta dello Sport.
"It's not that I said no, it was Moratti saying: 'Pagliuca doesn't move'."
Former Italy international goalkeeper Gianluca Pagliuca has admitted Manchester United wanted to sign him during his time at Inter Milan but any move was blocked by #Inter president Massimo Moratti. [Gazzetta dello Sport via MEN] #MUFC pic.twitter.com/LR3PeuRnJZ- RedReveal (@RedReveal) May 8, 2020
Peter Schmeichel was United's number one at the time and left at the end of the unprecedented treble triumph, with United struggling to find a solid goalkeeper in between the sticks until Edwin van der Sar was signed in 2005.
Pagliuca, meanwhile, also revealed he had an offer from Aston Villa, one of Schmeichel's future clubs, a couple of years later.
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(2)"In 1999 Aston Villa came in for me as did Spanish side Deportivo La Coruna who then won La Liga.- MUFC unite (@MUFCunite) May 8, 2020
"I have no regrets about not leaving because top players came to Inter, such as Ronaldo."#GianlucaPagliuca #MUFCunite
[:speaking_head:️:Gazetta dello Sport]
"Then in 1999, Aston Villa came for me, but also Deportivo la Coruna in Spain, who then won La Liga. I have no regrets," he added.
But while he ultimately never made the switch to England before retiring, Pagliuca has urged Azzurri and AC Milan goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma to do what he never did and play in the Premier League.
"He's very close to Milan, he would like to stay, but he needs to be careful," Pagliuca told TMW Radio.
"It will be years before they win something important. There are other teams who are clearly ahead. You have to think about that.
"If a great offer came in, I would think about it, especially if it came from the Premier League. If I were him, I'd aim to go to the Premier League."
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