Reliable journalist Fabrizio Romano has delivered a verdict on a failed summer transfer that is at odds with the Man Utd star’s version of events.
Man Utd made headlines this summer with the superb triple capture of Jadon Sancho, Raphael Varane and Cristiano Ronaldo. But bubbling under the surface were constant rumours regarding the exits of several fringe stars.
The likes of Jesse Lingard and Donny van de Beek were linked with exits, most notably to West Ham and Everton respectively.
In Van de Beek’s case, a loan move to Goodison Park had been touted with the aim of resurrecting his career in the same manner Lingard did with the Hammers last season.
However, when the window slammed shut, the Dutchman remained at Old Trafford.
Asked whether a switch to Goodison Park was close before deadline day, the 24-year-old told Rio Ferdinand’s Vibe with FIVE YouTube channel : “No. I spoke with the manager and the club, and they said they wanted me to stay here.”
However, that version of events is at odds with trusted source Romano. Speaking on his Here We Go Podcast (via the Express), Romano did acknowledge Man Utd sought to retain the midfielder, though insisted that a deal was in fact on the verge of completion.
“Everton on deadline day were more than close to signing Van de Beek,” said Romano.
“They had an agreement with the player. They had a project to make him a starter, to give him some game time. Everton were prepared to sign Van de Beek on loan from United.
“He [van de Beek] is not so happy because he was not playing. In the first three matches, he hasn’t played a single minute.
“He wanted to understand what was going to happen and so with Everton prepared to sign him, it was a big chance for him.
“United wanted him to stay, but Everton were really close. Benitez wanted him, the whole board wanted him, so it was more than an idea. It was a done deal between Everton and Donny van de Beek, but Man Utd said no.”
Ferdinand aghast at Van de Beek selections
Meanwhile, Donny van de Beek would not include Cristiano Ronaldo in his ideal five-a-side team for Man Utd – much to the shock of Rio Ferdinand.
Van de Beek was speaking in an extensive chat with former United defender Rio Ferdinand on his Vibe with FIVE YouTube channel.
When naming his choices, Van de Beek caught Ferdinand by surprise with a couple of notable omissions and intriguing picks. He said: “That’s a good question. I think I would pick Raphael [Varane]. I am a big fan of Juan [Mata] as well.
“You have to pick Bruno [Fernandes] because he scores a lot of goals and a lot of assists. I would go for Luke Shaw and Nemanja Matic.”
The fact that van de Beek opted to overlook superstar forwards such as Ronaldo and Jadon Sancho, though, was not what Ferdinand was expecting. The ex-defender replied: “This is your 5-a-side team? Your 5-a-side team to win?
“Okay, wow. That’s surprising that you didn’t pick Ronaldo, Sancho, [Edinson] Cavani, [Marcus] Rashford… You made a tactical decision, it’s fine, don’t worry!”