Fiorentina wing wizard Juan Cuadrado has revealed that he held transfer talks with Manchester United and Barcelona before the transfer window slams shut, but never got too carried away with intense speculation and is more than happy to stay in Serie A.
Cuadrado was persistently linked with a whole host of top European clubs after impressing with a string of consistent performances at the World Cup, with the star's rare mix of pace and technical quality helping Colombia shine at the South American showpiece.
Once that campaign ended at the quarter-final stage attention turned to sorting out his club future, but Fiorentina's firm stance over a minimum €40m asking price has helped them retain the clever forward, for now at least.
In an interview quoted by the Express the 26-year-old revealed: "The interest of Barcelona and Manchester? We had spoken, but the truth is that I've always remained calm.
"I'm glad to get back to Fiorentina for another season. I'm fine here."
Chelsea were also reported to still be actively pursuing a frankly farfetched move for Cuadrado just two weeks ago, although it appears Louis van Gaal, Jose Mourinho had other priorities in the final dash to recruit quality additions before Monday night's transfer deadline.
Di Maria ultimately preferred
There's no question that United were willing to go beyond their club-record mark of £150m spent in the summer transfer window for the right player, but ultimately Van Gaal chose Angel di Maria over making testing Fiorentina's resolve with a formal offer.
Barcelona meanwhile were very tempted to make Cuadrado their new roving right-back after flogging Dani Alves across Europe for most of the summer, although he quite surprisingly stayed at the Camp Nou as an a result their interest in the expensive deal was put on ice.
Season-long stay of execution
Fiorentina president Andrea dalle Valle kept his main man against the all the odds and has reason to be quite pleased with the make-up of Vincenzo Montella's squad this season, although it did start with a 2-0 away defeat to Roma last Saturday.
Cuadrado was unavailable for that Serie A showdown but should be back to bolster their quest to earn Champions League qualification very soon, potentially even against Genoa this weekend.
You can bet that top scouts across the continent will be keeping very close check on a player who despite being under contract until 2017 still looks primed for a big-money move in the very near future.
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