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04th Sep 2022

Manchester United turned down £4.5m Moises Caicedo deal to bring in Amad Diallo

Patrick McCarry

Moises Caicedo

The Ecuadorian wanted to follow in the foot-steps of Antonio Valencia.

Moises Caicedo’s fine start to the 2022/23 continued at the Amex Community Stadium, this afternoon, when he netted in the first half against Brendan Rodgers’ Leicester City [video below].

After impressing, as an 18-year-old, in his first full season of Ecuadorian Serie A, with Independiente del Valle, scouts in South America were already starting to rave about Caicedo. The midfielder had already made his senior international debut, by then, and had scored in a World Cup Qualifier against Uruguay.

Caicedo was destined for a bigger stage and, in early 2021, his representatives spoke with various European clubs about bringing him over for a look. Manchester United looked to be in the box-seat, especially as the player grew up as a fan of the club.

“My dream is to play for Manchester United,” Caicedo said last year, speaking to The Athletic. “Antonio Valencia is an example to follow.

“With his strength and dedication, he was able to get to that level. That motivates me to keep working hard and do the right things.”

Man United turned down early Moises Caicedo deal

When a deal for Moises Caicedo was put on the table for Manchester United, in January 2021, The Express reports that they could have secured his services for as little as £4.5m.

Ole Gunnar Solskjaer was in charge of United, at this stage, and often starting Scott McTominay, Fred and Bruno Fernandes as his midfield trio. For whatever reason – possibly other transfer targets Solskjaer had in mind – the club walked away.

While United ended up splashing out £37.2 million on Amad Diallo, Caicedo headed to Brighton & Hove Albion for an undisclosed fee. He was named in a couple of match-day squads but made no senior appearances in the remainder of that season. He headed out on loan, for 2021/22, to Beerschot in Belgium.

An injury crisis in the Brighton midfield led to Graham Potter recalling Caicedo from his loan in Belgium. He would go on to play 11 times and score a goal in a 4-0 home win over, of all teams, Manchester United. Solskjaer was gone, at this stage, and Ralf Rangnick was interim manager before Erik ten Hag took over, this summer.

In his first game of this season, Caicedo travelled to Old Trafford and ran the show against a United midfield trio of Fred, McTominay and Fernandes, as Brighton won 2-1. He was linked with a move to Liverpool in the recent transfer window, but Brighton held onto the talented 20-year-old for a while longer.

If and when he does leave the club, it will be for a sight more than £4.5 million.

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