Manchester City held talks with Jose Mourinho over becoming their new manager back in 2009 - but were convinced he wanted to succeed Sir Alex Ferguson as the next Manchester United boss.
The Sunday Mirror claims the Citizens approached 'the Special One' with a view to replacing Mark Hughes at the club's helm.
However, club executives felt Mourinho had ambitions to take charge at their great rivals, and Roberto Mancini was instead the man to get the job at the Etihad Stadium.
“Talks did take place about Mourinho before the appointment of Mancini," a Manchester City insider told the paper.
"But it quickly became apparent that he wasn’t the right man for the job. The perception given was that the one job Mourinho really wanted was to manage Manchester United."
The Portuguese tactician was amongst the favourites to succeed Ferguson this summer, after the Scot announced last year that he'd be leaving the Red Devils at the end of the 2012/13 season.
However, David Moyes got the nod to replace his compatriot at Old Trafford, and has subsequently struggled to meet expectation in a difficult first season at Manchester United.
Mourinho, meanwhile, is back in the Premier League at Chelsea after a six-year absence from the English top flight.
In 2009, the 51-year-old was at the helm of Inter Milan, and he left the Italian giants the following year to take the reigns at Real Madrid.
After three years in La Liga, he made his return to Stamford Bridge, with Roman Abramovich able to build bridges with the man that provided the Blues with unparalleled success during his first stint in west London.
And, he's been able to transform Chelsea into title contenders once again this season.