Barcelona made several attempts to sign Manchester United defender Victor Lindelof in the summer, according to the centre-back’s agent Hasan Cetinkaya.
The Catalan giants were on the lookout for defensive reinforcements before the Spanish transfer window closed earlier this month and initially set their sights on Matthijs de Ligt, who at the time was still an Ajax player.
A move for the Netherland’s international, however, never materialised – which paved the way for Italian champions Juventus to acquire the 20-year-old’s services.
And according to Cetinkaya, De Ligt’s move to Turin prompted Barca to enquire about Lindelof’s availability.
“Lindelof was perhaps Man Utd’s best player last season, and there was a lot of interest from clubs that are even better [than United] at the moment,” he told Aftonbladet.
“When Matthijs de Ligt chose Juventus, Victor was pronounced Barcelona’s first choice.
“His way of playing, his DNA, is very close to Barcelona’s way of playing.
“He is one of the world’s best centre-backs with the ball at his feet, and Barcelona wanted him. That’s how it was. I can talk about that now.
“They contacted Ed Woodward on numerous occasions with concrete offers. I had a meeting with their transfer manager, Matt Judge, to try to make a transition.
“But they just said: ‘There is no chance. Victor is one of our best players’. It ended up being a new agreement instead, even though Victor actually had three years left.
“Usually, they do not make extensions with players who have so long left on the contract, but when there was an interest at this level they had no other option.”
Lindelof and his Manchester United team-mates will be back in action on Monday night, welcoming their top-four rivals Arsenal to Old Trafford.