Manchester United newboy Eric Bailly turned down Manchester City for one key reason 6 years ago

Manchester United newboy Eric Bailly turned down Manchester City for one key reason

Manchester United might not have Champions League football to look forward to this season, but they remain a huge draw for prospective players.

Eric Bailly became the club's first summer signing when he arrived from Villarreal for a fee thought to be in the region of £30m, and the Ivorian turned down the chance to play at Europe's top table in order to move to Old Trafford.


According to The Sun, Bailly opted for United over neighbours City on the advice of compatriot Didier Drogba, who convinced him of the managerial qualities of Jose Mourinho.

Mourinho brought Drogba to England in 2005, and the former Chelsea striker scored more than 150 goals in two spells at Stamford Bridge.


"I prefer Mourinho, in part because of Didier Drogba, who Mourinho worked with," Bailly is quoted as saying.


"I have played with Didier in the Ivory Coast, he is a friend and he told me, 'Jose did this for me, Jose did that for me'.

"Yaya [Toure] also called me and said come to City. But once Jose spoke to me and Didier gave me advice, I knew straight away I wanted to play for him."

Now, we're not entirely sure when the pair would have crossed paths at international level, with Drogba playing his last game for Les Éléphants at the 2014 World Cup and Bailly making his bow several months later.

Perhaps it was during the 2015 Africa Cup of Nations, where Bailly was part of the winning team in the final and Drogba lent his very vocal (albeit non-playing) support.


Regardless, the youngster has been making his mark during United's pre-season fixtures and could well earn himself a start when Mourinho's team take on Premier League champions Leicester City in the Community Shield on August 7.