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Raphael Varane reveals Sir Alex Ferguson came to his house to sign him at the age of 18 before Zidane convinced him to quit Man Utd

SIR ALEX FERGUSON once went to the house of young Raphael Varane to convince him to sign for Manchester United.

And the then 18-year-old was ‘very, very interested’ in a move to Old Trafford from childhood club Lens.

Raphael Varane finally moved to Manchester United last summer

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Raphael Varane finally moved to Manchester United last summerCredit: Reuters
Sir Alex Ferguson wants to bring Varane to Old Trafford at the age of 18

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Sir Alex Ferguson wants to bring Varane to Old Trafford at the age of 18Credit: PA

But a phone call from the great Zinedine Zidane soon changed that, with the French legend convincing him that Real Madrid should be his preferred destination.

Varane said to Telegraph of Ferguson’s visit: “It was a shock. Honestly, I waited in my house and looked out the window to see if he was really coming.

“When he arrived, I didn’t speak English. My mother speaks perfect English, so she is the one who talks more to him.

“It was a discussion about how he sees me, how he can have a project with me and how he can help me grow as a player and as a person.

“It was very, very exciting and a huge experience for me.”

Varane ended up signing for Madrid instead of United – but then moved to Old Trafford in a deal worth £41m this summer.

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Zinedine Zidane was the sporting director of Real Madrid at the time

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Zinedine Zidane was the sporting director of Real Madrid at the timeCredit: AP

And things could have been very different had the decorated centre-back continued to ignore Zidane’s calls – because he couldn’t believe what was happening to him.

He said: “Zizou called me and the transfer accelerated very quickly. I went to Madrid, talked to (Jose) Mourinho, I went back to France and then I took the Baccalaureate exam the day after I met Mourinho.

“It was a crazy moment of my life. I played with the first team at Lens and the club knew I had to be sold. So a lot of agents called me.

“I was very tired because there was so much to do and think about.

“So when Zizou called me for the first time, I was really busy and at first I didn’t know it was him.

“When I recognized him, I was shocked. It was crazy, so I asked him to call me back!”

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https://www.the-sun.com/sport/premier-league/4201619/raphael-varane-sir-alex-ferguson-zinedine-zidane/ Raphael Varane reveals Sir Alex Ferguson came to his house to sign him at the age of 18 before Zidane convinced him to quit Man Utd

Huynh Nguyen

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