Brazilian football legend Pele has admitted that he turned down the opportunity to move to Manchester United during his playing days.
The striker is renowned as one of the best players to have ever played the game but he spent the majority of his career at Santos, where he made more than 600 appearances scoring almost, on average, a goal a game.
Pele lamented the lack of “love” in the game currently, citing that as one of the reasons he never chose to leave Santos.
As Brazil’s leading goalscorer of all-time, the former forward’s view are always interesting and he explained why he never made the move to Europe.
Pele said: “In the past, it was a profession filled with love. Now, it is just a profession. There is not that love of playing for my club, playing for my country.
“Obviously, a soccer player needs to make a living from the game, but it is different from my time. I had many offers to play for Real Madrid, AC Milan, Manchester United. However, Santos was playing well, I was playing well. I did not want to leave.”
Pele left Santos in 1974 but still chose not to come to Europe, instead making the move to America to play for the New York Cosmos. It would have been a real coup for Man United had they ever convinced the Brazilian to sign for them but it was always unlikely that he would leave Santos.