Manchester United and Sir Alex Ferguson must have had quite the decision when it came to considering who should be the latter’s replacement at Old Trafford.
Eventually, it was David Moyes who was given the nod - don’t worry, we’re not going to go into his shortcomings here - but that wasn’t before other, perhaps more illustrious, candidates were approached.
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp is quoted by the Daily Mirror as having confirmed that he snubbed Sir Alex when the Scot enquired about his availability. This, obviously, came when he was still manager of Borussia Dortmund.
"Yeah, we spoke,” said Klopp.
“It was a big honour for me, the whole talk, to be honest.
“But in life timing is always important and that was a time I could not leave Dortmund. That was it.
“It wasn’t like this where you say ‘come in March or May’. You are in April and you are in the middle of the planning for next season.
“You have this player and this player and this player coming because you are there, but then you are not there anymore. That doesn’t work. Not in my life.
“I didn’t hear about a real offer but, if there was, I could not have done it. I first had to finish the job with Dortmund and then think about other things. Maybe that is not smart, but that is my way.”
What might have been
Alas, what might have been. If nothing else, Klopp’s refusal to entertain United discussions is a testament to his integrity as a manager and his loyalty as a man.
That said, the Red Devils could certainly have done with someone of his elite pedigree when Sir Alex finally threw in the towel. David Moyes - who, despite the criticisms, probably wasn’t given enough time - failed to inspire, and a charismatic touchline figure like Klopp could have orchestrated things differently.
Klopp at Liverpool
Of course, the past is the past is the past, as they say. Klopp now sits on the throne at Liverpool, who coincidentally face off against United tomorrow at Anfield.
The German will be vying to achieve a victory that would see the Reds draw level with their Mancunian rivals today. Louis van Gaal, likely for his own job’s sake, will do his best to prevent that from happening.