Rio Ferdinand on why he almost left Manchester United for Barcelona

Rio Ferdinand on why he almost left Manchester United for Barcelona

Former Manchester United defender Rio Ferdinand has admitted that he was on the verge of joining Barcelona back in 2008, however, he did not want to join a club whose change was in motion, Daily Mail reported.

Ferdinand revealed that the then manager Frank Rijkaard had approached him in the tunnel after a Champions League semifinal at Camp Nou in a bid to convince him to join the club.

Manchester United went on to beat Barcelona in the second leg of the tournament and eventually beat Chelsea in the final.

"It came close. There were discussions with my agent, Barca had touched base. I'd spoken to Riijkard, not about going there but he made his feelings known," the former Leeds United player told BT Sport.

"It was actually after the game in Barcelona where we drew 0-0, in the tunnel after the game I spoke to him.

"The problem with me going abroad, I always said I definitely wanted to go abroad and play, but the only thing that would ever have stopped me as if I was successful on home shores and I was lucky and fortunate to find a great club in Manchester United where it was going to be almost impossible for me to leave.

"We beat them and went on to become European champions, so why would I leave the European champions to go to another team in transition.

"At that point Xavi, Iniesta, Messi, they weren't the players they were three or four years later so it was a very different landscape at that time in Barcelona," he concluded.

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