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Louis van Gaal reveals Thomas Muller turned down a move to Manchester United in 2014 & 2015

Thank goodness for Bayern Munich’s sake this move didn’t wind up happening.

SC Freiburg v FC Bayern Muenchen - Bundesliga Photo by Alex Grimm/Bongarts/Getty Images

Thomas Muller is completely synonymous with the idea of Bayern Munich and everything the club stands for. A true Bavarian himself, Muller is representative of Bayern DNA with a complete embodiment of the Mia San Mia philosophy, having worked his way through Bayern’s youth teams up into the senior squad, and the rest is history. At Bayern, he’s played for a handful of different managers throughout the years, and former manager Louis van Gaal, who managed Bayern from July 2009 to April 2011, recently revealed that he tried to convince Muller to join Manchester United in the Premier League, who he managed for two seasons from 2014 to 2016.

Per a new report from Bild, van Gaal really tried to lure Muller to United in 2015, and had personally called him several times to try to convince him to do so. United was prepared to pay a considerable fee for him at the time, coming off of winning the World Cup with Germany in Brazil in 2014 and another Bundesliga title for Bayern in the 2014/15 season where they had also gone to the semi-finals of the UEFA Champions League. They were willing to offer Muller a salary of 20 million euros per year and Ed Woodward had reportedly okayed 100 million euros for the transfer if it were to actually materialize.

The current Netherlands boss had even revealed that he had tried to get Muller ahead of the 2015/16 season as well. “I tried to bring Müller to Manchester both in the 2014/2015 season and in the 2015/2016 season,” he recently confirmed. The first time, he said “in 2014 the board of directors of FC Bayern was persistent,” recalling Bayern’s front office not wanting to entertain the idea of selling Muller. The second time around, he revealed that Muller’s wife, Lisa, was part of the reason Muller personally said ‘no.’ She was not really open to a move away from Germany. “In 2015 it would have been possible if his wife had been a little more open to a transfer abroad. At least that was the reason Thomas gave my assistant Marcel Bout, who had had all the conversations with him, why the transfer had been rejected,” van Gaal explained.


In a way, Bayern fans can give partial thanks to Lisa for being a part of the reason why Muller decided not to join Manchester United back then. He’s had some of the best seasons of his career with Bayern since then and was an incredibly integral piece of the treble winning 2019/20 season under Hansi Flick. In retrospect, that was sort of the beginning of what’s been an uncharacteristically poor spell at United. In the span that they tried twice to bring Muller to the northwest of England, United wound up signing Angel Di Maria, Daley Blind, Radamel Falcao, Ander Herrera, Marcos Rojo, Jesse Lingard, Luke Shaw, Bastian Schweinsteiger, Anthony Martial, Sergio Romero, Memphis Depay, Javier Hernandez, Matteo Darmian, and Morgan Schneiderlin, only a few of whom really worked out in the long run.

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