Kaka isn’t the only one to stick his nose up…
Manchester City are currently nursing their injured pride after Kaka told them where to shove their money, but Mark Hughes aren’t the only ones to have faced rejection. In fact, according to our compilation of of top ten transfer snubs, Sir Alex Ferguson has seen seen more rejections than Danielle Lloyd’s Mensa application…
1. Younes Kaboul (Sunderland, 2008)
Kaboul was part of a £14m bid from Sunderland in the summer that also comprised of Spurs teammates Teemi Tainio, Steed Malbranque and Pascal Chimbonda. While the other three left, Kaboul’s agent explained his client wouldn’t be joining them “even if there was an earthquake.” Kaboul joined Portsmouth instead.
2. Paul Gascoigne (Manchester Utd, 1988)
Back in 1988, Gazza promised Manchester United he would be joining them for a British transfer record fee before their manager Alex Ferguson took a holiday to Malta. While sunning himself, Fergie discovered the England legend had in fact signed a deal with Spurs. Ferguson – without a shred of bitterness – suggested the player was lured to London after Spurs bribed him with a house for his family, and that he would not have experienced so many personal problems under his watchful eye.
3. David Beckham (AC and Internazionale, 2007)
Mr B rejected offers from Italian giants AC and Inter in 2007 when he chose to sign for football powerhouse LA Galaxy instead. Beckham – who advised Kaka to stay in Milan recently – insisted the move would provide him with a greater challenge. And not more money. Honestly.
4. Ronaldinho (Manchester Utd, Chelsea, Manchester City, loads of others)
Ronaldinho famously rejected Manchester Untied in 2003 in favour of a move to Barcelona. A few years later, Chelsea were the second English club to be turned down by the gap-toothed Brazilian. “Not Chelsea or Milan. I want to stay with Barcelona – that is my wish, that is the wish of Ronaldinho,” said Ronnie, who enjoys talking about himself in third person almost as much as Cristiano Ronaldo. Now, of course, he plays for AC Milan, whose chairman Silvio Berlusconi once insisted they didn’t need or want him.
5. John Obi Mikel (Manchester Utd, 2006)
At least Kaka didn’t sign for City and then snub them as soon as he arrived. That’s what John Obi Mikel/ Mikel John Obi/ John Mikel Obi to Manchester United in 2006. He signed for United before promptly snubbing them and claiming he wanted to join rivals Chelsea instead. Before even playing a game for his new side he stated his desire to leave:
“Inside me I know where I want to go and I think Chelsea is the better place for me to be.”
Mikel got his wish, with Roman Abramovich forking out £16 million for the player, £12 million of that going to Manchester United. He later explained he was pressured into signing a mega money deal with United.
6. Samuel Eto’o (Tottenham, 2008)
After selling Defoe and Berbatov in the summer, Spurs set their sights on a replacement in Barcelona’s Samuel Eto’o. “Tottenham, and I hope the English fans will forgive me, are a club in mid-table and I need more,” said the Cameron striker. With Spurs facing a relegation battle this season we think their fans with happily forgive you, Sammy.
7. Alan Shearer (Manchester Utd, 1996)
After Alan Shearer finished top scorer at Euro 96 and top marksman in Premier League two years running, Blackburn received two world record £15 million bids for their star man from league leaders Manchester United and his hometown club Newcastle United. Shearer was initially gearing for a move to Old Trafford before he opted out of the transfer and joined Newcastle, managed by his hero Kevin Keegan. While the Reds enjoyed one of the most successful periods in their history, Shearer spent the next decade trophy-less at the Magpies before retiring and becoming a really rubbish pundit.
8. Matt le Tissier (Chelsea and Tottenham, 1990s)
Matt le Tissier was and still is revered around Southampton, labelled as ‘Le God’ for his contributions on the south coast. According to his autobiography, he turned down offers to join both Chelsea and Milan, instead opting to stay at the Saints for whom he scored over 100 Premier League goals. He cites his loyalty to Southampton for his reluctance to leave, although it’s probably more likely he was afraid another side would have forced him to lose weight.
9. Steven Gerrard (Chelsea, 2005)
What a tease. In the summer of 2005, Liverpool rejected a £32 million bid from Chelsea for their skipper, but after he revealed he wanted to leave, a move looked imminent. “Steven has told us he will not accept our offer of an improved and extended contract because he wants to leave,” said a club statement. With Chelsea boss Jose Mourniho plotting ways to accommodate both Lampsie and Stevie G in his midfield, the latter suddenly changed his mind.
10. Aaron Ramsey (Man Utd 2008)
In the summer Fergie looked set to land the highly-rated 17-year-old. Unfortunately for the red-faced Scot, there was another bidder in the form of a Frenchman with a penchant for turning teenagers into millionaires. Apparently, Fergie only spoke to Ramsey’s parents and offered to loan him back to Cardiff, while Wenger promised Ramsey a chance to play in the first team with the departure of Matthieu Flamini. What makes it worse for the current league leaders is that A-Ram is a boyhood United fan, according to his Wikipedia page.