Inter Milan full-back Yuto Nagatomo has confirmed that he had rejected a bid from Manchester United in January as he wanted to continue playing in Italy. Louis van Gaal was looking to bring the player in to alleviate his woes at full-back, with a plethora of injuries keeping him short in that position.
Antonio Valencia, Marcos Rojo, Luke Shaw and Ashley Young are all out, forcing Van Gaal to have to play 19-year-old Cameron Borthwick-Jackson at full-back and the Dutchman was looking to bring in at least one defender in January to alleviate this crisis at the back. Nagatomo revealed that he was more than happy to reject the Red Devils as he is happy playing for Inter and would prefer extending his contract than consider a move abroad.
"I like everything about Inter, I want to stay here and renew my contract," Nagatomo told Inter's TV channel, as quoted by the Daily Mail. "I turned down an offer from Manchester United, as my desire is to stay here. I have an excellent rapport with Roberto Mancini."
The Red Devils did not make any additions to the first team squad in January and will be hoping to get their injured players back on the pitch as soon as possible to bolster their challenge for a place in the top four. The Red Devils are currently in fifth spot, six points adrift of fourth placed Manchester City, who in turn are six points behind leaders Leicester City.
However, Nagatomo, despite quashing the opportunity to sign for United revealed that he is not having as much fun at Inter than when he first joined the club. The Japanese international has 83 caps for his country and is an integral member of the Inter squad.
"I'm having a great time, though I had the most fun with Wesley Sneijder, Marco Materazzi, Javier Zanetti and Antonio Cassano. Marco taught me Italian, including a few swearwords! Now I do some yoga exercises with Samir Handanovic before a game. It was very difficult when I first arrived at Cesena, because I didn't understand any Italian at all. I didn't have an interpreter either. Then I went to Italian school and everything got better," he added.