MAN UNITED CONFIDENTIAL: Harry Kane WANTED switch to Old Trafford

MAN UNITED CONFIDENTIAL: Harry Kane WANTED Old Trafford move before Rasmus Hojlund signed, tension intensifies with singing section supporters and fans face huge travel bill for European trips

  • The player instead moved to Bayern Munich in a deal worth up to £100million 
  • PLUS: The ‘sliding doors’ moment that could have seen Ferguson manage Spurs 
  • Listen to the latest episode of Mail Sport’s podcast ‘It’s All Kicking Off!’ 

Harry Kane would have waited until next summer to sign for Manchester United if he was given assurances over a move to Old Trafford, United Confidential can exclusively reveal.

Kane will make his Champions League debut for Bayern Munich against United at the Allianz Arena on Wednesday night after joining the Bundesliga club from Tottenham in a deal worth up to £100million.

However, Kane had set his heart on United and would have seen out the final 12 months of his contract at Spurs before signing for Erik ten Hag’s side as a free agent next year if he knew the deal was guaranteed to go ahead.

Kane was Ten Hag’s top target but United couldn’t afford his transfer fee and wages on their limited budget this summer and abandoned their pursuit of the 30-year-old England captain.

Ten Hag switched his sights to a younger and cheaper option in Rasmus Hojlund which convinced Kane that his hopes of becoming a United player either this year or next were over. A week after Hojlund signed for United in a £72m deal, Kane completed his move to Bayern.

Harry Kane was prepared to wait 12 months and sign for Man United, Mail Sport can reveal

Erik ten Hag made signing the former Tottenham talisman a priority but was held back by fees – instead signing Atalanta’s Rasmus Hojlund (right)

Owner Joe Lewis (right, in 2019) put pressure on chairman Daniel Levy (left) to sell this summer

Spurs chief Daniel Levy was under huge pressure from owner Joe Lewis to cash in on Kane this summer and prevent him from walking away for nothing in a year’s time. He was also reluctant to sell to a Premier League rival like United.

But Kane was prepared to defy Spurs and sit tight for another 12 months if he felt United were prepared to keep the door open for him.

He has scored four goals in his first five games for Bayern and will have a point to prove on Wednesday night when he lines up against the club that could have signed him.

United did consider buying two strikers at one point – with Brighton’s rising star Evan Ferguson a potential target – before spending £180m on Hojlund, Mason Mount, Andre Onana and Altay Bayindir, as well as bringing in Sofyan Amrabat and Sergio Reguilon on loan.


Mary Earps was unhappy a move to Arsenal was blocked after the goalkeeper decided she wanted to leave Manchester United following the Women’s World Cup.

England’s No.1 is out of contract next summer and a new deal has been hard to negotiate, with United having multiple staff involved in discussions.

This was a reoccurring theme throughout their negotiations with out-of-contract players, with as many as 10 people said to have been involved in one case.

The fact United have kept her is a big win on the pitch, particularly after the transfer window started dreadfully. They lost Alessia Russo to WSL rivals Arsenal and full-back Ona Batlle to Barcelona. Things improved with additions, including World Cup Golden Boot winner Hinata Miyazawa from Japan.

Earps and Co are away on international duty before the WSL season kicks off next weekend.

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Mary Earps sought a summer move to Arsenal but United were unwilling to lose England’s No 1

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Antony has been on paid leave for a week, but it’s understood that United were concerned in the summer that allegations made against the Brazil international could escalate quickly.

United only became aware of the claims in June when Antony’s ex-girlfriend Gabriela Cavallin accused him of assaulting her in the Brazilian media. She has since repeated the allegation, prompting the player to give a tearful television interview last week defending himself.

Two more women, Ingrid Lana and Rayssa de Freitas, subsequently came forward with similar claims although De Freitas is said to have withdrawn her allegation. Antony denies any wrongdoing.

Sources say that even as the Mason Greenwood saga was coming to an end, United were conscious that the issue with Antony may only just have been starting. The 23-year-old has been allowed to stay in Brazil while on leave to clear his name.

United have been concerned since June that allegations against Antony could escalate


Tensions have been growing between United and the group which oversees the atmosphere section at Old Trafford.

The Red Army (TRA) has refused to run the singing section for the Carabao Cup match against Crystal Palace on September 26 and the Champions League clash with Galatasaray a week later – a decision which sources say has left United ‘very disappointed’.

It came after the TRA were advised they had been identified as a ‘risk group’ by local authorities, which could lead to issues for its members. United insisted they had ‘never considered or classified The Red Army as a risk group’.

TRA, which allocates tickets to its members in the right-side of the Stretford End, had asked for additional seating in A-Stand – located next to the away supporters – for the games against Palace and Galatasaray, but local authorities did not sign it off in time.

The Red Army received written confirmation that ‘no United fan will ever be refused entry to an area of Old Trafford as a result of them being a member of TRA’ (file photo)

The group is believed to have failed to meet deadlines to supply the list of fans who would be in the section for the Palace game, but TRA insisted safety authorities were to blame, and not the group themselves.

Sources said United are keen to carrying on working with TRA, as they have done since they were established in 2017, but have suggested they may take over the running of the section if it becomes an ongoing issue. In a statement, TRA said: ‘We have now received, in writing from MUFC, confirmation that “no United fan will ever be refused entry to an area of Old Trafford as a result of them being a member of TRA”.

‘As a result of this and the fact TRA are apparently no longer classed as a risk group by the local authorities, we’re satisfied that we can run TRA for all remaining fixtures without fear or discrimination against TRA members. We’ll be monitoring this situation on a game-by-game basis but are hopeful that this has now been resolved.’


Gary Neville wondered out loud about ‘bugs’ at United on his podcast this week, suggesting Erik ten Hag may have problems behind the scenes with unhappy players like Harry Maguire and Jadon Sancho, and United Confidential understands that the squad are aware of the need for more unity amid their poor start to the season.

The talk among the players after Saturday’s defeat to Brighton – United’s third in five games – was that they have lost some of the team spirit from last season and need to stick together more.


Cathy Ferguson, wife of Sir Alex, has been identified as the main reason he chose Manchester United over Tottenham, thereby changing the course of football history.

While it was known Fergie had shaken hands with Spurs chairman Irving Scholar and co-owner Paul Bobroff at a meeting in Paris to go to White Hart Lane from Aberdeen in 1984 before changing his mind, it has never been explained why.

A new book about Tottenham, Still Dreaming, claims to have the answer with author Alex Fynn, a former director of Satchi & Satchi, having access to all the leading members of the Spurs hierarchy at that time.

The book says: ‘The directors, to a man, were enthusiastic endorsers of the choice (Ferguson). All aspects of the contract agreed. Unfortunately, Mrs Ferguson was not keen on a move to London and that was that.’

A new book will reveal that Sir Alex Ferguson’s wife Cathy played a pivotal role in United job

With his decision to move to Manchester, he became the most decorated manager in history

The rest is history. Ferguson went to Old Trafford in 1986 and became the most successful manager ever in British football over the next 27 years, his trophy haul including a record 13 Premier Leagues and two Champions Leagues.

The United chairman who appointed him, Martin Edwards, accepted over time that Spurs nearly got in first and that United fans should be indebted to Cathy’s aversion to living in the capital city.

Still Dreaming details a discussion between Edwards and Scholar about Fergie’s change of heart.

‘Martin refused to believe him (Scholar). When, out of curiosity, he tackled Ferguson about the story, Ferguson averted his gaze and didn’t reply. Edwards subsequently told Scholar: “Now I believe you and know you were telling the truth”.’


As the Champions League gets underway, it has emerged that travel for this season’s group stage will cost United fans more than any other supporters in Europe.

Research by money experts Sambla has shown that the average United follower will have to pay £1,162 to travel to Munich, Istanbul and Copenhagen.

United are sixth in the table of total air miles despite the four-hour flight to Turkey to face Galatasaray, but the fact they are playing in Munich during Oktoberfest has pushed the prices up.

By comparison, it will cost £818 to watch Manchester City, £745 for Newcastle and £413 for Arsenal.

United have had a mini clear-out of their academy, axing a total of five coaches. United Confidential understands that Jim Skeldon, Brian Mcfarlane, Dave Bailey, Ronnie Cusick and Gavin Oliver have all gone.

United sources confirmed that a ‘small number’ of coaches have left the club which was part of a wider restructure to enhance the academy’s recruitment work, and it was the right time to freshen things up.

Meanwhile, young striker Joe Hugill has agreed a new contract at United after impressing Erik ten Hag.

The 19-year-old, who joined from Sunderland in 2020 and may be a loan target for the Wearsiders in January, went away on the club’s pre-season tour of the United States, with Ten Hag keen to see what he can offer.

Joe Hugill (centre) is expected to formally sign a new deal after impressing in pre-season

Hugill drew praise for his performances in America and is now expected to formally sign a new three-year deal at Old Trafford with the option of another season this week.

United rebuffed interest in the teenager over the summer, with a host of EFL sides attempting to take him on loan. Ten Hag wanted a further look at him during sessions at Carrington and he will continue to train with the first team while playing for Under-21 team.

Hugill already has three goals and an assist from four Premier League 2 matches this term and his development will be re-evaluated towards the end of the year. United could sanction a loan switch in January to offer him more experience.

Meanwhile, United have signed goalkeeper Billy Hartley from Fleetwood Town for significant training compensation and handed forward Gabriele Biancheri has first professional contract.


It’s All Kicking Off is an exciting new podcast from Mail Sport that promises a different take on Premier League football, launching with a preview show today and every week this season.

It is available on MailOnline, Mail+, YouTube , Apple Music and Spotify

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