‘Offered me a contract…’ – Liverpool youngster explains why he said no to Man United move

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Cody Gakpo isn’t the only player currently on Liverpool’s books who could easily have ended up at Manchester United.

The Old Trafford outfit were heavily linked with the Dutchman before he eventually came to Anfield midway through last season, and another Reds attacker was also wanted by our arch-rivals in times past.

In an interview with the Liverpool Echo, Fabio Carvalho revealed that United officials had travelled to London to offer a contract to the youngster, as well as training with Chelsea, but he eventually chose to join Fulham in 2015 instead.

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The now 21-year-old explained: “United came down. It was around the same time I was getting scouted by Fulham and just having fun playing Sunday League. United came down and offered me a contract but I just didn’t think it was the right thing for me to do, to move away from my family there and then.

“Then it came down to Chelsea and Fulham. I remember going to Chelsea and did a few sessions with them. Michael Olise was there, Jamal Musiala was there. A few players like that were there, and I remember these were very good back then anyway, but then Fulham came calling.

“They offered me schooling which was very important for my parents, and I think that’s what kind of sealed the deal. I was going to the Fulham squad and getting more training; it just made more sense. It all turned out how it turned out and I’m thankful for that.”

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It was clear from a young age that Carvalho had a very mature head on his shoulders – how many boys in his position would’ve jumped at the offer from a club like United, especially when he was playing recreationally at the time of their approach?

The fact that the Manchester outfit came calling for him, and that he trained with Chelsea, clearly showed that he had a massive ceiling even as a child, but he was still level-headed enough to look at the bigger picture and opt for the move which ticked the most boxes in terms of training ground time and education.

Instead of relocating to a club where the pathway to the first team would’ve been unforgiving, he stayed in London and let his talent do the work before breaking into the senior ranks at Fulham and earning his transfer to Liverpool when he’d entered his adult years and accumulated some experience.

Even by deferring his eventual move to Merseyside in 2022, he showed a tremendous loyalty to the Cottagers when plenty of others in a similar position wouldn’t have though twice about snatching the golden ticket.

Carvalho’s career at Anfield hasn’t truly taken flight yet, but a rewarding loan spell at Hull has put him in good stead to make his case for the Reds in pre-season.

Should that lead to him becoming a first-team star at Liverpool, then his boyhood rejection of United would feel all the sweeter!

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