The president of French league leaders Nice has revealed that he made attempts to sign Manchester United winger Memphis Depay, but he has been forced to walk away from a potential deal due to the financial demands of the Old Trafford club.
United signed Depay from PSV Eindhoven in the summer of 2015 for a reported £25m and Nice president Jean Pierre Rivere has hinted the Premier League club are now looking to recoup a majority of that investment as they attempt to sell the Dutchman in this month’s transfer window.
Depay’s wage demands may also be an issue for clubs considering a move for the 22-year-old, who would have to be viewed as something of a risky signing after his miserable year and a half at United has seen his reputation as one of Europe’s rising stars take a battering.
“We looked at him, like a lot of clubs have, but it is extremely complicated,” Rivere told French radio station RMC. “It is a situation which is out of our financial reach
“You have a club that bought him for a certain amount that wants to sell him. When we looked at Depay, it was in another way, which is not possible today.
“He was bought very expensively by Manchester United, they want to possibly sell him and we cannot compete in this sort of situation.”
Everton manager Ronald Koeman has confirmed that he is keen to sign Depay this month, but it remains to be seen whether United’s inflated asking price for a player who has failed to make any kind of impact in the Premier League will be a block to a potential deal.
Depay has made just four substitute appearances for United this season, with his manager Jose Mourinho confirming he has been reluctant to select him as he expects the player to leave the club this month.