Schalke sporting director, Christian Heidel, has confirmed that Jose Mourinho was desperate to sign Breel Embolo for Manchester United.
— José Mourinho-MUFC (@Utd_JM) July 30, 2016
The Swiss media also mentioned the Red Devils were in “direct talks” with the Swiss forward.
The Schalke sporting director revealed that he had to intercept and sign the youngster as quickly as possible, because there were a host of clubs that were interested in securing Embolo’s signature.
“There are a number of reasons why we signed Embolo,” Heidel told the official Bundesliga website.
“First and foremost there are sporting reasons. It’s nothing new that he is a great player. There is a reason why Mourinho desperately wanted to sign him for Manchester United.
“But we also see him as a player the Schalke fans can identify with, a bit like Benedikt Howedes, Leroy Sane and someone like Ralf Fahrmann.
“Embolo had a similar role at Basel, where 80 per cent of the shirts they sold had his name on it. He is very open, is always smiling and makes it easy for people to like him.
“When we realised there was a possibility that we could miss out on signing him due to other clubs’ interest, we had to move fast.
“President Clemens Tonnies happily made his plane available. We flew out to Montpellier at 1300 CET and returned five hours later. We had wrapped up the deal in that short period.”
Breel Embolo began his career in Switzerland, making his senior debut for FC Basel in 2014. The forward made a total of 86 appearances in his career, scoring 30 goals in the process. He also represented his nation at this year’s European Championship.
Mourinho may have failed to sign the youngster, but the Special One did make up for it by making progress in the deal with Paul Pogba. The Red Devils now look poised to complete the record-breaking signing of their former midfielder.