Man Utd's Jose Mourinho says he wanted Nemanja Matic ahead of Eric Dier
By Zinny Boswell
Last Updated: 27/10/17 4:37pm
Jose Mourinho says Nemanja Matic was the player he "really wanted" at Manchester United in the summer, rather than Tottenham midfielder Eric Dier.
Spurs boss Mauricio Pochettino revealed in Guillem Balague's new book, Brave New World: Inside Pochettino's Spurs, that Mourinho had made two approaches to sign Dier, but explained to the 22-year-old he would not be sold.
Mourinho made it clear he was in the market for a holding midfielder during the transfer window and Sky Sports News understands he was interested in both Matic and Dier, but ended up signing the Serbia international from Chelsea for £40m.
In response to Pochettino's comments, Mourinho has asserted that Matic was the player he "really" wanted and admitted he was surprised Chelsea allowed the 29-year-old to move to Old Trafford.
"I have the player that I want to have, probably I have the player that I didn't think it was possible to have," said Mourinho.
"But in the end we got the player that I really wanted."
Mourinho will be hoping Matic can help his side return to winning ways at Old Trafford on Saturday when his side host Tottenham, live on Sky Sports Premier League.
Ahead of the game, Mourinho revealed defender Eric Bailly faces a late fitness test to see if he will be ready and confirmed Phil Jones would be available to play after being an unused substitute for Tuesday night's 2-0 win over Swansea in the Carabao Cup.
"Phil Jones is good, he was on the bench on Tuesday. There was no need to play, but he was ready so he is really ready," he added.
"Eric, let's see, (we have) one more training session. But he's the only one that I hope from that injured group that can be ready for tomorrow."