Manchester United tried and failed with a late bid to land Gareth Bale from Tottenham in 2013, and now it is being claimed that the Red Devils not only offered a record fee but tried to throw Javier Hernandez into the mix.
It is also being claimed that they agreed to take Emmanuel Adebayor to Old Trafford as part of the deal at Spurs' request.
Those claims are made by Sunday Times journalist Duncan Castles while writing for the Bleacher Report, who reports that Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward believed that he could pull off the deal, however Bale already had his heart set on a move to Real Madrid after a summer of speculation.
Recent reports have suggested that Manchester United could be back in hunt for the Welsh winger in the summer, and could be willing to offer in the region of £90 million to secure his services.
However that seems unlikely, with Bale going public over his desire to keep on winning trophies at the Bernabeu having already claimed the Copa del Rey and the Champions League in his maiden season.
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So it seems as though Manchester United missed their chance to land Bale when it became clear he was leaving Tottenham. According to Castles, Woodward believed the tactic of swooping late and shocking Real Madrid would work, so towards the end of the 2013 summer window put an incredible to Tottenham.
He says that not only did Manchester United offer in excess of £80 million, the previous record fee they'd recouped for Cristiano Ronaldo, they also threw Javier Hernandez into the mix as a sweetener.
Tottenham wanted to get rid of Emmanuel Adebayor that summer because of reported problems with his attitude and his sizeable pay-packet, and the Red Devils also agreed to take him on as part of the deal.
Although Spurs were willing to do business after growing frustrated with Real Madrid's reluctance to firm up their interest, Bale had already been planning a move to Spain for much of the summer and wouldn't change his plans at the last minute.
Eventually a deal in the region of £82 million was struck between Real Madrid and Tottenham that made Bale the most expensive player ever, and Manchester United missed out on the chance to land one of the world's best players.
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