Jose Mourinho revealed he blocked Raphael Varane from joining Manchester United while at Real Madrid.
The Portuguese tactician left the Spanish capital club and returned to his former club Chelsea in the summer of 2013. Varane was attracting interest from top clubs across Europe while he was with Lens.
The Old Trafford club were keen on securing the services of the French international three years ago as their former manager Sir Alex Ferguson was looking to strengthen his back four. Mourinho says the 21-year-old already had "one foot at United" before joining Real.
"I was on holiday and in Madrid. Zinedine Zidane arrived with a DVD and I thought, 'That player, with two years' work with us, would be fantastic'," Mourinho told Telefoot.
"Varane had one foot at Manchester United but Real Madrid are very strong and Rapha came to us."
The former Real manager is still interested in coaching Varane and is trying to sign him for Chelsea. However, Mourinho is aware that any move for the central defender will not be easy and claims the 10-times English champions will not let the Frenchman leave Santiago Bernabeu.
Meanwhile, Varane also confirmed that he had offers from United and Paris Saint-Germian before joining Real. The centre-half revealed he rejected an opportunity to make a move to Old Trafford after Phil Jones joined Red Devils from Blackburn Rovers in 2011.
The defender says he was not confident of getting regular playing time at United. Mourinho assured him of first team chances at Real and that convinced Varane to join the La Liga giants.
"PSG? The project there wasn't clear. The Qataris had only just arrived and it was all very vague," Varane told told L'Equipe.
"Manchester United? They had just signed Phil Jones in my position. My first reaction when Real wanted to sign me was not, 'Of course I will go'. I only made my decision when I knew that the coach wanted me to play in the first team."