Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred is on the verge of joining Manchester United – but he came close to joining neighbours Manchester City in January.
There were widespread reports during the winter transfer window that City were in advanced talks to sign the 25-year-old, with concerns that Fernandinho was being overworked in the middle of the park during a hectic period of fixtures.
No deal was agreed and City continued with their existing squad, but rumours persisted for a while that Fred would be on the summer agenda. Plans then changed with Napoli’s Jorginho becoming Guardiola’s number one target, giving United a free run at Fred.
Despite claims of his move to Old Trafford being all but done, Fred suggested it isn’t yet when speaking to a news conference on Thursday, and he could wait until after the World Cup to define his future.
“There’s been some advanced talks since January, when I almost went to Manchester City,” he said.
“Manchester United talked to my staff and Shakhtar. But my head is entirely with the World Cup.
“Gilberto Silva [agent] is a guy in which I trust, he deals with all off-pitch stuff. My family is always well informed, too.
“I don’t know what I’m going to choose, maybe I’ll decide better after the World Cup.”
Fred has spoken highly of Pep Guardiola in the past and may want to wait and see if the Catalan opts to renew his interest, but the likelihood is that he will be lining up in the red of Manchester United next season as City’s negotiators work hard to get a deal for Jorginho over the line.
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