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Rejected Players who snubbed Premier League clubs to join their rivals
Cael|May. 15, 2019
Manchester City are planning to hijack Manchester United ’s transfer plans this summer, according to reports.
City boss Pep Guardiola is believed to be interested in signing Juventus defender Joao Cancelo and Sporting Lisbon midfielder Bruno Fernandes – two players who are on United’s wish list.
Red Devils boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer sees Cancelo as the ideal replacement for departing right-back Antonio Valencia.
But reports in Italy claim City have opened talks with the 24-year-old over a move to the Etihad.
Here, talkSPORT look at players who have snubbed Premier League clubs to join their rivals.
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Willian (Chelsea)
In 2013, Willian had completed a medical at Tottenham ahead of a £30million move from Anzhi Makhachkala. But Chelsea hijacked the transfer at the last minute to leave Tottenham chiefs furious.
Spurs reportedly accused the Blues of having a vendetta against them. Despite the controversy, the move worked out well for Willian, who has won two Premier League title, an FA Cup and a League Cup.
Alexis Sanchez (Manchester United)
Manchester City saw a £60million bid to sign Sanchez from Arsenal collapse on the final day of the 2017 summer transfer window. Guardiola remained keen to bring the Chilean to the club the following January, but he opted to join Manchester United, who offered him a reported £500,000-a-week deal.
Sanchez has scored just five goals since moving to Old Trafford and is likely to be given the boot by Solskjaer this summer.
Dele Alli (Tottenham)
Brendan Rodgers, Liverpool boss at the time, thought the club had wrapped up a deal with MK Dons to sign Alli after the pair met and spoke in a hotel room.
Ex-Dons manager Karl Robinson even drove the midfielder to Liverpool. However, Alli ended up signing for Tottenham.
Romelu Lukaku (Manchester United)
After scoring 87 goals in a four-year spell at Everton , Lukaku was being heavily linked with a return to Chelsea in 2017.
It is understood the Blues matched Manchester United’s £75million offer to sign Lukaku, but the striker chose the Red Devils and linked up with Jose Mourinho – the manager who sold him to the Toffees in 2014.
Jorginho (Chelsea)
Last summer, Pep Guardiola was on the lookout for a holding midfielder to provide competition for ageing midfielder Fernandinho.
Jorginho’s name had been linked with the club for months. But Chelsea boss Maurizio Sarri, who worked with Jorginho at Napoli, made him the the Blues’ top transfer target.
The Italy international completed a £50million move to Stamford Bridge – and it seems as though Jorginho’s mother persuaded him to join Chelsea. Maria Tereza Freitas said: “He really wanted to play for Pep Guardiola.
“But it did not depend only on him, but on the clubs as well. He asked me: ‘As a player, mum, which one would you pick: Chelsea or City?’ I said Chelsea because of the greatness and stronger tradition.”
Luke Shaw (Manchester United)
After starring for Southampton for two seasons, Shaw was being linked with the Premier League’s top clubs in 2014. As a boyhood Chelsea fan, the Blues were favourites to land him. However, he joined Manchester United for £27million on a £100,000-a-week deal. Mourinho, who managed Chelsea at the time, said Shaw’s wages would have ‘killed’ the club.
In 2016, the England left-back revealed why he chose United over Chelsea. He said: “I thought I could play more football in Manchester so that’s why I picked them.
“Patrice Evra was leaving (for Juventus) and Jose, at that time, had a solid back four that I knew he liked. So, even though Chelsea were much closer to my home, I felt United were the better choice for me.”
Michy Batshuayi (Chelsea)
The Times claimed Crystal Palace had a £30million bid accepted by Marseille for Batshuayi in June 2016, only for the striker to reject their advances. The Belgium international wanted to wait for a bigger club to sign him – and Chelsea came along with a similar offer and a deal was confirmed just over a week later.
Ironically, Batshuayi just completed a loan spell with the Eagles, scoring six goals in 13 appearances.
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