Football transfers can be a complicated business. Fans do hear the rumors, confirmed deals, announced transfer fees and salary announcements, but there are lots of factors to consider in order to close a deal.
There are times a club will contact a particular player, before you know it another club signs him. Chelsea Football Club have hijacked Manchester United’s transfer deals previously.
Here are the three Manchester United’s deals hijacked by Chelsea.
1. Arjen Robben’s transfer to Chelsea (2004).
Flying to London to meet Sir Alex Ferguson in 2004, 19-year-old Arjen Robben was impressed with the words: “You can play for Manchester United.” However, a belated offer from Chelsea caught up with United and PSV Eindhoven brokered the deal for their own benefit.
2. Pedro to Chelsea (2015); Of course, this is perhaps one of the most painful transfer hijacks on United’s supporters. In 2015, Ed Woodward flew to Barcelona to make a deal with Pedro before his Spanish agent claimed the Red Devils had “overslept”.
3. John Obi Mikel to Chelsea; Manchester United announced the signing of young Nigerian superstar Mikel Obi in 2005, all with a photo of the player wearing a United’s jersey that should be official, right?
The Red Devils had a pre-signed contract with Mikel and did not expect to be hijacked by English rivals Chelsea, who United said signed him illegally. The year of drama continued and FIFA had to step in and Chelsea had to pay Manchester United £12m in addition to the transfer fee. Mikel moved briefly to Chelsea in 2006.