Paris Saint-Germain defender Marquinhos has confirmed Barcelona and Manchester United tried to sign him last summer.
The Brazilian centre-back has been linked with both clubs with reports claiming Barcelona had a big-money bid rejected, while United had a £30 million offer turned down by the French champions.
With the arrival of David Luiz from Chelsea and PSG already boasting Thiago Silva in defense, speculation was the club may let the talented 20-year-old leave. But the Ligue Un champions surprised the experts by holding on to the young Brazilian defender, despite the big-money bids for his services.
The 20-year-old confirmed the two European giants came calling for him last summer in an interview with the French television channel Telefoot. He also went on to say he wishes to remain in Paris for the foreseeable future.
“Manchester United and Barcelona wanted me,” Marquinhos said. “The two clubs negotiated with PSG but the club didn’t want to sell me.”
“That gave me confidence. The president and the manager are happy with me. It would be good to renew [my contract] in Paris because I am happy here.”
When asked about Marquinhos’ future at the French club, PSG manager Laurent Blanc sang the defender’s praises and suggested a new deal could be in the player’s future.
“He is an exceptional player, with a spirit and a special mentality,” Blanc said recently. “It is good that as a player he can operate in different roles, and let’s not forget he is just 20-years-old.”
“He represents the future of PSG and for that reason we could not let him leave. We will do all we can to renew his contract.”
Marquinhos begin his playing career with Brazilian giants, Corinthians, before moving on to AS Roma in July 2012. The following season the defender traded Rome for Paris, signing a five-year deal with PSG for a reported £23 million.
Prior to the start of the campaign it was believed the young defender would struggle for playing time following the arrival of David Luiz from Chelsea, and due to the presence of Thiago Silva.
But Marquinhos has gone on to make eighteen league appearances for Paris Saint-Germain this season, while also featuring five times during the club’s Champions League campaign.
Earlier this year, it was reported that PSG had told Manchester United they would need to pay £112 million to sign the player away from the French club – but it was later learned those comments were “tongue-in-cheek”.
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