Paris Saint-Germain president Nasser Al-Khelaifi has claimed Angel Di Maria wanted to join the Ligue 1 club before arriving at Manchester United.
The 26-year-old broke the British transfer record after a £59.7million move from Real Madrid last week, but Al-Khelaifi claims the move to Old Trafford was his second choice.
"Di Maria wanted to come to Paris but even without FFP (Financial Fair Play), we wouldn't have signed him," Al-Khelaifi told French newspaper Le Parisien.
“For two or three weeks I discussed this issue with my friend Florentino Perez, the president of Real Madrid.
“We met twice, we made an offer, but we did not agree on the price. For me it was too expensive. It has nothing to do with Financial Fair Play.
"The player wanted to come to Paris, but this was not possible.”
The suggestion comes just days after Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti suggested Di Maria only moved to Manchester United for money.
Although Ancelotti did not name Di Maria, the Italian boss inferred that the 26-year-old was not prepared to stay and fight for a place at the Bernabeu.
"Some players love to compete, others prefer to make more money," Ancelotti told Eurosport.
"If a player needs motivation to play at the best club in the world, I have no problem in letting him go."
The 10 biggest deals that DIDN'T happen
The 10 biggest deals that DIDN'T happen
1/10 Arturo Vidal
Despite repeated denials from both the player and Juventus, this one just refused to go away. Perhaps it was because Manchester United were his main suitor, and considering they were ready to break the British transfer record for Angel Di Maria and do a deal for Radamel Falcao suggested it was wrong to rule anything out when it came to United this summer. However, in this case, it should have been.
2/10 Sami Khedira
Will he, won’t he, will he, won’t he? One year remaining on his contract and some brilliant performances at the World Cup set this one up perfectly. Real Madrid manager Carlo Ancelotti even revealed he wasn't prepared to sign a new deal at the Bernabeu. Arsenal were the club most consistently linked but it seems the German will see out his deal instead (and then probably join Bayern Munich next summer).
3/10 Marco Reus
One of the world’s best young players, Reus was linked with just about every major European club. Manchester United and Liverpool were supposed to be leading the race in England, whilst Bayern Munich, Real Madrid and several other clubs came into the mix. Reports suggest Reus has a relatively low release clause that will be triggered next summer - leading to suggestions Borussia Dortmund would cash in now. They didn't - but expect lots of talk next summer.
4/10 Mats Hummels
This deal appeared to be dead after Jurgen Klopp said he had no intention to sell and made the World Cup hero his club captain. But rumours for the German centre-back continued to swirl and given United's defensive woes – Tyler Blackett is not the answer – it was of little surprise.
5/10 Edinson Cavani
Surely Cavani will move to the Premier League at some point - the rumours have been going on for years - but it wasn't to be this summer. The Uruguay international is apparently unhappy in Ligue 1, despite scoring 25 goals for PSG last season. That led to rumours linking him with every decent Premier League side.
6/10 Petr Cech
The return of Thibaut Courtois from his loan spell at Atletico Madrid led to speculation Chelsea goalkeeper Petr Cech would be on his way out of Stamford Bridge. Jose Mourinho said he wanted the Czech Republic international to stay - and that's exactly what happened.
7/10 Victor Valdes
When Valdes said he wouldn't be signing a new deal with Barcelona, speculation over his next move went into overdrive. Yet with the window coming to a close he's still yet to find a new club. Because he's a free agent, Valdes is still free to find a new club and could be on his way to Liverpool.
8/10 William Carvalho
A few teams were in need of defensive midfielders this summer and Carvalho is one of the best - cue transfer speculation. Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester United and Manchester City were linked with the Portugal international. He said he wasn't interested in leaving Sporting Lisbon, and in a refreshing twist, it turned out Carvalho was a man of his word.
9/10 Lukas Podolski
Much of the summer focus has been on the lack of attacking options at Arsenal. That didn't stop one of those already there being persistently linked with a move away. World Cup winner Posolski was in and out of the side last season and played out of position, leading to talk of a return to Germany.
10/10 Fabio Borini
Having been sent out on loan to Sunderland last season and an influx of players arriving at Anfield, it seemed Borini was certain to leave Anfield. QPR and Sunderland in particular were in the mix but amid accusations of crazy wage demands the striker stayed put. He said after the close of the window that he was: 'VERY happy with myself'.
The player himself said upon joining Manchester United: "I have thoroughly enjoyed my time in Spain and there were a lot of clubs interested in me, but United is the only club that I would have left Real Madrid for."
PSG were forced to curb their spending this summer, with David Luiz for £50m and Serge Aurier for £8m the only arrivals; last summer they spent £89m on Edinson Cavani, Lucas Digne and Marquinhos.
Uefa sanctioned PSG, along with Manchester City, under the new guidelines, prompting criticism from Al-Khelaifi.
"I do not know if Michel Platini wants to kill French football, but FFP is not fair," he added. "It is very difficult to understand. The big clubs stay big and small clubs remain small.
"We respect the rules but want to discuss it with Uefa in October to try to change the rules a little. Otherwise investors will not come in football - they will go to other sports such as Formula 1."
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