Edwin van der Sar has opened up about Arsenal’s summer pursuit of Lisandro Martinez, and Manchester United’s subsequent signing of the Argentine.
Martínez quickly established himself as one of United’s most important players in the early days of Erik ten Hag’s reign, overcoming a difficult start to the season to establish himself as an asset to his new team.
But things could have been much different had Arsenal pushed their way earlier in the summer transfer window, having shown an interest in signing the defender from Ajax before United sealed the deal.
said Van der Sar, who is CEO at Ajax the athlete On the Gunners’ failed pursuit: “Arsenal came in earlier for Lisandro, but it was such an amount that we said, ‘Thank you very much for the offer, but we’d rather keep the player than start negotiating’.”
He added: “With United, it was a bit different. Over the years we’ve had some conversations: Daley Blind, Donny van de Beek.
“My job is to make sure I make the best decisions for Ajax.”
Martinez ended up signing a five-year deal with the Red Devils in a deal worth up to £57m, with Van der Sar signing on sale to his former employers with a higher offer.
United will return to doing business with Ajax later in the window, forgoing a larger fee of £86m to give Brazilian winger Anthony away from the club.
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