Man United ‘missed out on a meeting about signing Darwin Nunez because Benfica president Rui Costa got FOOD POISONING at a party’… giving Liverpool a leg-up before it became an £85m one-horse race
- Liverpool broke their transfer record to sign Darwin Nunez for £85m last week
- Manchester United were also interested in buying the 22-year-old forward
- United were meant to meet Benfica president Rui Costa in April to discuss a deal
- But the meeting was reportedly called off after Costa suffered food poisoning
- It is claimed that Liverpool led the race for Nunez from that moment on
An untimely case of food poisoning reportedly derailed Manchester United’s pursuit of Darwin Nunez earlier this year.
Liverpool broke their transfer record to sign the Uruguayan forward for £85million from Benfica last week.
It is a major coup for the Reds, as Nunez had attracted interest from Atletico Madrid and Manchester United after scoring 34 goals last season.
Liverpool broke their transfer record to sign Darwin Nunez for £85million from Benfica
According to The Athletic, United were set to meet Benfica’s president Rui Costa in April to discuss a potential deal. However, the meeting was called off after Costa and his family suffered food poisoning while celebrating his birthday.
It is claimed that Liverpool led the race for Nunez’s signature from that moment on, as United may have taken the postponement as a snub and were yet to appoint Erik ten Hag as manager to help dictate negotiations.
Liverpool played Benfica in the Champions League quarter-final second leg a few days later and after the game Jurgen Klopp reportedly told the Portuguese club’s caretaker manager Nelson Verissimo that Nunez was an impressive talent.
Manchester United’s meeting with Rui Costa was postponed as he suffered food poisoning
Erik ten Hag had not been appointed United boss at the time, giving Liverpool an advantage
The 22-year-old scored home and away against the Reds, which would have made Klopp even more eager to sign him.
United are not the only Premier League club who missed out on signing Nunez, as The Athletic add that West Ham believed they were close to agreeing a £45million deal for him in January.
But it will be Anfield where Nunez showcases his quality next season, with the Uruguayan effectively replacing Bayern Munich-bound Sadio Mane in Liverpool’s front three.
Nunez scored home and away against Liverpool in the Champions League last season
‘There are some top, top players here with great qualities,’ Nunez said in his first interview on Merseyside. ‘There is Firmino, who’s a great player, and then Jota, who is another great striker. Luis Diaz, Salah.
‘To play alongside these “monsters” is going to be something really special for me, because as a kid you dream of going far and I dreamt of being able to play in Europe, but I didn’t expect to get as far as a great club like Liverpool.
‘There’ll be a lot of competition between the forwards here, but it will be healthy competition. I’m still only 22 and I’ve got lots that I can still learn, and this is a brand new experience for me.’
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