Real Madrid’s long pursuit over Manchester United goalkeeper David De Gea ended up as a futile effort, having the deal fall through at the very end of the transfer window on the European continent.
Many wondered how a seemingly done deal well before the transfer window closed in Spain had suddenly collapsed. Rumors immediately began spreading that paperwork issues were the culprit, and it may have been Manchester United’s inability to get paperwork in on time or even in the wrong format that was the ultimate issue.
Given all the rumors out there, Real Madrid did a rare thing and let it all bare in an official statement on the deal that feel through.
Here are the main points made by the Spanish side, per ESPNFC:
“1. Manchester United didn’t open any negotiations for federation rights over David De Gea until yesterday morning.
“2. Real Madrid, despite the difficulties regarding entering into an operation of this kind on the last day of the transfer window, Real Madrid agreed to start these conversations.
“3. When Manchester United opened this negotiation yesterday morning they did so with the plan to reach an agreement with Real Madrid player Keylor Navas so that he would join the British club this season and said that they are in contact with the player’s representative.
“4. Real Madrid and Manchester United reached a quick agreement over the transfers of both players. After drafting the corresponding contractual documents with the goal of proceeding within the time frame of both the TMS of FIFA as well as La Liga, Real Madrid sent the contracts to Manchester United at 13:39 Spanish time.
“5. Manchester United replies with its comments eight hours later at 21:43 Spanish time, including small modifications. Because they were not major, all were immediately accepted by Real Madrid with the intention to register the player in both TMS and the Liga in time.
“6. Real Madrid, after getting the signatures of both De Gea and Keylor Navas, remitted the papers to the English club with the contracts signed at 23:32 Spanish time, and waited to receive the signed documents from Manchester United.
“7. Manchester United reached a final agreement with Keylor Navas’ representative at 23:53 Spain time and it was at that time that the documents were remitted to player to be signed.
“8. Manchester United put the data regarding the David De Gea transfer into the TMS but not that of Keylor Navas at 00:00 Spanish time, while remitting to Real Madrid the signed transfer contracts at the same time. Real Madrid received that complete documentation at 00:02 and tried to access TMS but it was already shut down.
“9. At 00:26 Spain time, FIFA’s TMS system invited Real Madrid to add the information about the player David De Gea due to the fact that England’s transfer window remained open until today. Real Madrid, realising the eventuality of a contentious run for the player’s transfer, decides to remit the contracts to La Liga, even knowing that the window for the deal had closed.
“10. Definitely, Real Madrid did everything that was necessary at all times to get these two transfers completed.”
An eight-hour wait between contact on a contract like this? What was Manchester United waiting for, or better yet trying to get away with?
Given the fact that De Gea has really fallen out of favor and has clearly wanted this move for awhile, Manchester United sure dragged their feet in getting this deal done. It truly is a head-scratching situation, and one that was unavoidable to say the least.
UPDATE: Manchester United has released their own statement on the matter and blamed Real Madrid for what happened.
In it, United claimed that they “did not seek contact from Real Madrid” to sell De Gea. Documents for De Gea to cancel his Manchester United contract arrived from Real Madrid five minutes before the deadline. The agreement was sent by Manchester United to TMS two minutes before the deadline and Real Madrid didn’t.
Oh this will be a story that will keep on going.