Chelsea reportedly tried to hijack Man United’s signing of former Monaco striker Anthony Martial with a late bid of their own.
According to the Sunday Times, the Premier League champions were prepared to match United’s offer of £36m, but they were too late as they were told that the deal had already been done.
The 19-year-old completed his move to Old Trafford earlier this week, although Louis Van Gaal and the United board have had their strategy questioned given that the teenager has yet to prove that he is worth that kind of outlay.
If all the performance-related bonuses are triggered in the deal, it is suggested that the fee could rise up to £57m with a number of them understood to be very achievable.
Nevertheless, United fans will take some comfort from the fact that they were able to beat their rivals to the Frenchman’s signing, particularly after they lost out on Pedro last month.
Martial will now be under pressure to produce this season as he will be the second option for Van Gaal behind Wayne Rooney, although the Dutchman could tinker with his system and hand the former Monaco star a place in his starting line-up.