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05th Sep 2016

Raphael Varane admits it was tough to say no to Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United

He's given his reasons for staying in Madrid

Ben Kiely

Turning down Manchester United was a “difficult” decision for Raphael Varane, but the Frenchman believes he made the right choice.

The Real Madrid defender was linked with a move to Old Trafford during the summer transfer window in a move that would have seen him reunite with his old boss Jose Mourinho.

Prior to signing promising youngster Eric Bailly from Villarreal, Varane was singled out as a player who could come straight into the Red Devils first team in order to shore up their defence. Suddenly, he started garnering a lot of inches in the transfer gossip columns.

Varane hinted in an interview with Canal+ that the move did tickle his fancy but after weighing everything up, he made up his mind to stay and hasn’t looked back since.

“Of course it’s flattering. Manchester United are a very big club. But from the moment when Madrid and I are in sync on my project, there’s no questions to ask yourself.”

“I have always said I feel good in Madrid. It’s not easy to say ‘No’ to Jose Mourinho, but you have to weigh up the pros and the cons. We’re men, we have decisions to make and that’s how it is.”

Ultimately, it was Zinedine Zidane’s vote of confidence that convinced him to stay put at the Bernabeu. The Madrid boss played a pivotal role in bringing him to the Spanish capital five years ago and Varane still clearly feels a sense of loyalty towards his compatriot.

“It was really that trust, that support which was important for me, and when I was reassured on that point, there was no question of it any more.”

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