City United: Evolution of a Rivalry

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"Maybe there was some interest or a conversation but it's not a case of Monaco not letting me go to Manchester United or denying me the move, nothing ever really materialised".

Mourinho's targets for that position were primarily Leicester City's Harry Maguire, Jérôme Boateng of Bayern Munich and Toby Alderweireld of Tottenham.

Wolves' connections to Portuguese super agent Jorge Mendes were a source of complaint for their competitors as they romped to the Championship title last season.

Instead, Mourinho was left empty-handed from the final days of the window despite warning that the Red Devils face a hard season by not delivering his targets in the transfer market.

As those players end their vacations and return to the club, perhaps the defending champions will be vulnerable early in the season as they attempt to resettle their lineup.

Last season may have been their highest finish since Sir Alex Ferguson retired, but the 19-point gap to runaway Premier League champions Manchester City underlined the improvements required.

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"I'm not confident", Mourinho said, when asked whether there would be more players arriving before the deadline.

"I will have to focus on the players I have and in relation to this first couple of matches".

Whatever the explanation, the lack of new faces compounds issues surrounding the United squad heading into the Premier League season.

Richard Scudamore, Premier League executive chairman, said: "We know there are many passionate fans of Premier League clubs right across the Middle East and North Africa, and that BeIN Sports does an excellent job making the competition available to them. You can not expect them to be fit". "I think that's it".

The Red Devils coach has cut a sullen figure throughout pre-season with the former Chelsea boss unable to hide his dissatisfaction with Brazil worldwide midfielder Fred being his sides only high profile signing. Is not an opportunity, is a match, an important match, we would prefer to have a couple more days but decision was to be first to play and that's it.

"But I keep saying and thinking and feeling that the second last season was one of my biggest achievements in the game".

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