Erik ten Hague has revealed that Lisandro Martinez called him and insisted he would turn down an offer from Arsenal if Manchester United offered a rival to re-sign him in the summer.
The Dutch coach joined United as Rolf Rangnick’s permanent successor for the 2022/23 season and made five signings during his first transfer window.
In his third arrival at United, ten Hague reunited Martinez with coaching at Ajax, but there was considerable interest in the Argentine’s services.
90min reported in June that Arsenal were ahead of United and several other Premier League rivals in the race to sign Martinez.
Speaking to Voetbal International, Ten Hag discussed the transfer story.
“I had a great time. [at Ajax]As we created a project. Out of nowhere, we brought Ajax back to the European top level. But Martinez himself wanted to leave. If we hadn’t taken him, he would have gone to Arsenal,” said Ten Hague.
“At a certain point, Lecha called me and said: ‘Coach, listen, I will leave Ajax no matter what. I can sign for Arsenal, but if you want me, I will go to Manchester United’.”
“Then I thought: I shouldn’t shoot myself and United in the foot. There was no way he would stay in Amsterdam, that was out of the question.”
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Martinez signed for United for a fee that could total as much as £60 million.
Although there were some initial concerns that his 5ft9 height could make him an easy target for Premier League strikers, Martinez has recovered well from some poor performances at the start of the season and established himself as the division’s leading centre-back. established on