Bayern Munich defender Mats Hummels has revealed he almost joined Manchester United in previous summers before switching Borussia Dortmund for Bavaria a few months ago, when speaking to The Daily Mail.
The German World Cup winner was a target for David Moyes in 2013 and was then relentlessly pursued by Louis Van Gaal the following year, with Hummels admitting he was close to moving to the Premier League.
‘Yes, very close. There were talks, several times in the last few years. I had offers from England or one of the three big Spanish clubs. But nothing got close like from England. Van Gaal wanted me but he wasn’t the only one. It is difficult for me to play in England now. I’m 28 next month and I’ve signed here for five years.’
An important reason for Hummels rejecting United’s advances was Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who helped craft the defender into one of the best in the world during his time at Borussia Dortmund- and Hummels doesn’t think he’d be at the level he is now without the guidance of the Reds boss.
‘We wouldn’t have had that success with another coach in Dortmund. He is very emotional. All the time. He can’t settle down. How intense? Every day, 100 per cent! The important thing is that when he thinks he made a mistake, he can really apologise to a player — whether that is alone or in front of the whole team. If he says something inappropriate, he realises it afterwards. He doesn’t take things personally.’
Hummels’ controversial switch to Bayern Munich this summer, returning to his hometown club, has not resulted in instant success, as the German champions are guaranteed to finish second in their Champions League group no matter what result they secure against Atletico Madrid this evening.