Barcelona star Neymar has admitted that he held talks with Manchester United during this year's summer transfer window, but the Red Devils failed to make a concrete bid to bring the Brazilian to Old Trafford.
"We had conversations, but there was nothing concrete, I heard that there were offers, but none made it to me," Neymar said, as quoted by Goal.com
The Premier League giants were linked with a big money move for the Barcelona star, with the club willing to match the player's release clause and pay the required €190m ($218m, £140m) to bring him to the Premier League, according to Brazilian publication Globo Esporte. Louis van Gaal was looking for a marquee signing, and after being rebuffed by Gareth Bale, the Dutch manager turned to Neymar, with many reports suggesting that United could be playing the long game with the actual move set to happen next summer.
Neymar has been impressive since joining the Catalan power team, and has formed a potent partnership with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez. Last season the threesome netted a total of 122 goals between them, setting a Spanish record for the number of goals scored by a trio of teammates. The previous record was held by Christiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gonzalo Higuain for Real Madrid with 118 goals in the 2011-12 season.
Meanwhile, Van Gaal has praised another Brazilian on United's books. Andreas Pereira made his first start for the senior squad in their game against Ipswich Town in the Capital One Cup on 23 September, and capped off a fine performance with a sublime free-kick. Van Gaal has revealed that the midfielder can play in a number of positions, but warned him that he faces tough competition to nail down a regular place in the side.
"It was his first [start] and I think he did rather well. He scored a fantastic, important goal and I'm pleased, but he has to compete, for example, with Juan Mata, Memphis Depay and Ashley Young so it shall be difficult for him," Van Gaal said, as quoted on United's official site.
"He can play in the number 7, 10 and 11 positions. [Jesse] Lingard can also play number 7, 10 and 11. I have multi-functional players but they have to compete with other players. It is dependant on the level of the players. I always put the best player in the line-up when he is working for the team," the former Bayern Munich manager added.