Southampton boss Ronald Koeman has revealed he tried to bring Manchester United-bound Memphis Depay to St Mary’s last summer.
Memphis passed a medical at Man United’s training ground this week and the club will make him their first signing of the summer when the transfer window opens.
Ronald’s brother, Erwin, is represented by the same management as Memphis but the player decided to stay for another year at PSV Eindhoven.
Koeman conceded that Southampton had “no chance” after United signalled their intention of signing Memphis.
Speaking about the 21-year-old, Koeman said: “I wanted to get him last year already. With Erwin [Koeman] we tried that, he’s with the same management as Memphis, but the boy wanted to stay another year at PSV.
“Now we knew that we did not have to call. When Manchester United come, we have no chance.”
Instead of moving to Southampton, Memphis fired PSV to the Eredivisie title and finished the campaign as their top scorer with 28 goals in 40 appearances in all competitions.
It is a testament to Memphis’ character that he chose to focus on his development rather than chasing riches. Louis van Gaal has shown he can improve any player this season if they have the right attitude, with players such as Marouane Fellaini enjoying remarkable turnarounds this term.