Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho has admitted that he tried to land Antonio Valencia for Real Madrid when he was in charge of the Spanish giants.
The Ecuador international has been a solid member of the Red Devils squad for some years and is now first-choice right-back for the Portuguese trainer at Old Trafford.
Valencia has made a quick return from injury and continues to be a prominent member of the United team that hopes to put forward a top-four challenge this season.
Mourinho has picked out the South American veteran for specific praise and confessed that he had a failed attempt to sign the former Wigan Athletic wideman during his time at the Santiago Bernabeu.
“I tried to sign Antonio a number of years ago, when I was at Madrid,” Mourinho told MUTV.
“Even though he was not playing right-back at the time, I thought he could be phenomenal in that position. As it was, United told me ‘no chance!’”
Valencia is out of contract at the end of the current season and speculation that United may sign a new right-back continues to circulate in the press.
The Ecuadorian, who reportedly earns £70,000-a-week at United, is ahead of Matteo Darmian and Timothy Fosu-Mensah in Mourinho’s preferences currently.