Yes, unfortunately you did read that headline correctly, United fans.
The Independent, to name just one source, is reporting that long-term Manchester United transfer target, Thiago Alcantara, will snub a move to United in favor of hooking up with his former coach, Pep Guardiola, at Bayern Munich.
It had been believed for a while now that Thiago would end up playing in Manchester red this coming season, with the Spaniard wanting out of Barcelona as a result of a lack of playing time.
Now however, it would appear as though the 22-year-old has had a last-minute change of heart, and might potentially travel to Germany instead of England.
In truth, the move makes more sense on the surface than it might appear.
Many fans will probably be questioning how Thiago thinks he can break into a Bayern team that demolished his Barca side a few months back in the Champions League.
Guardiola is the answer. While Tito Vilanova never really gave Thiago a chance at Barca, Guardiola was always touting Alcantara as the next big thing in Spanish football.
Clearly the player believes that if he hooks up with the boss who was always so sure he would become one of the next greats of the game, he has a fairly good chance of finding a regular first team place.
If this deal does come to fruition, then United fans will become incredibly disconcerted with the amount of promising youth talents who are constantly being linked with the club—seemingly to the extent that they are on the brink of signing—only to be beaten out for their man by a club with more money at the very last moment.
Eden Hazard to Chelsea, Lucas Moura to PSG, and now seemingly Thiago to Bayern Munich.
And that's just this past year alone. If United look back long enough, there are plenty of other names to add to the list.
Speaking about potentially signing his former midfielder, Pep Guardiola said, as reported by the Daily Mail:
"I want Thiago Alcantara. I have asked Bayern to get him but I don't know what will happen. Thiago is the only player I want, that's what I told them.
It'll be him or no one. We have many players but we the need the special extra quality that Thiago Alcantara brings.
I know Thiago very well. I talked to Rummenigge and Sammer about him, we will wait and then see.
I don't think adding another midfielder will be a problem for us. I spoke to club about my concept and told them why I want Thiago Alcantara. I give my opinion, but I listen to the board. If they say no, that's ok.
Nobody will leave Barcelona, unless they feel they won't play much. He wants to play. That's why I proposed him to the club."
So while nothing is confirmed about Thiago moving in that statement, it does inform us that Pep is very much on the hunt for his signature.
Considering how dominant Bayern were last season in all competitions, I'm a little bit baffled as to why they are having such a busy summer.
Having already wrapped up the transfer of Mario Gotze, and being heavily linked with Robert Lewandowski (both from Dortmund)—Bayern chairman Karl-Heinz Rummenigge even told Bild (via Sky Sports) he expects the striker to arrive next summer—they are now on the hunt to add yet more talent to their side.
Do they really need it? Definitely not half as much as United do, particularly in the midfield department.
But this is football, and I highly doubt that they will take United's feelings on the matter into account.
If this is all true then United fans are going to be bitterly disappointed. There are other talents and targets out there, but this is the one that a lot of them wanted to see happen.
Let's see how this pans out in the coming days.
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