Manchester United signing Donny van de Beek has revealed that close friend Steven Bergwijn urged him to sign for Tottenham Hotspur instead.
Van de Beek became the first summer arrival at Old Trafford earlier this week when he signed a five-year deal with the option of an additional year.
The Dutch international had been expected to join Real Madrid this summer but the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on revenues forced the La Liga champions out of the running and gave United a free run at Van de Beek.
Van de Beek’s agent also claimed there was interest from Arsenal over a possible move, but fellow Dutch international Bergwijn was hoping he’d choose the other side of north London instead.
“Steven Bergwijn texted me to see whether I would play for Spurs,” Van de Beek told Algemeen Dagblad. “But I chose United.
“I felt ready for the next step. This was the time to go. That is why I was on the phone with my agent last weekend. In the end, there was an agreement.”
MEN Sport understand Tottenham never had any real intentions of rivalling United for the former Ajax midfielder this summer, with Jose Mourinho keen to recruit a back-up option to Harry Kane as the priority.
Speaking earlier this week Van de Beek also opened up on the failed move to Real Madrid.
“You do not want to know how relieved I am that I have my transfer,” he told De Telegraaf. “As you know I was around with Real Madrid and the clubs also had an agreement, but for some reason it did not go through.
“Players who were going to leave, stayed and Madrid dropped out. Of course, you are annoyed at the beginning and you wonder if such a possibility will arise again.
“Manchester United is a dream, of course a great club, in the strongest league in the world. I didn’t have to think for a second when I got this chance.”