Bayern Munich forward Thomas Muller has said he considered a move away from the club a couple of years ago.
"There was a stage when the subject arose two years ago when I considered it, but then the club immediately backed me and I was told I belong here," said Muller. "I didn't have to think about it a great deal after Bayern said we are counting on you and that you are an important man for us."
Per Lovell, United were said to be keen on the striker when Louis van Gaal was in charge at Old Trafford in 2015. Bayern's chief financial officer Jan-Christian Dreesen told SportBild (h/t Lovell) earlier this year that a bid of €100 million was lodged for Muller from a Premier League side during that year.
When asked about a potential move away from the Allianz Arena in the future, Muller said he wasn't completely against the prospect.
"Of course, it's possible," he said. "When my time is up, it's up. [Bastian] Schweinsteiger was here for over 10 years and now he's been gone for over two years and another player is here instead."
As noted by DW Sports ahead of Bayern's 2-0 loss to Hoffenheim on Saturday, Muller has long been a key man at the club:
DW Sports @dw_sports
Thomas Müller makes his 400th appearance for Bayern Munich today. ✅ 161 goals ✅ 133 assists ✅ Still just 27 years old. #TSGFCB https://t.co/PPK7vbuaPx2017-9-9 16:23:14
During his time with Bayern, the 27-year-old has lifted six league titles as well as the UEFA Champions League in the 2012-13 season.
Since Carlo Ancelotti arrived at the club, Muller has found it difficult to be as effective. The Italian coach has utilised Thiago Alcantara as the most advanced midfielder in support of Robert Lewandowski, meaning Muller hasn't had many chances to operate in his best position.
In 2016-17, Muller's goal return suffered, as he netted just five times in the Bundesliga. Still, as noted by former Germany striker Oliver Bierhoff, the forward has a strong affinity with the Bayern supporters, per Squawka News:
Squawka News @SquawkaNews
Oliver Bierhoff on Thomas Muller: "I hope that Bayern Munich is aware of the fact that he is a figure people identify with the club." https://t.co/EqTXspBP522017-9-1 21:21:00
Comments like these from Muller will only serve to stoke up more speculation about his future. Indeed, Darren Lewis of the Daily Mirror recently reported that Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool were all interested in doing a deal for the player in the January window.
If Muller does struggle again between now and the winter break, it'll be intriguing to see if there is genuine interest in him. After all, Bayern are blessed with attacking talent, with the likes of Thiago, James Rodriguez, Arjen Robben, Franck Ribery and Kingsley Coman all competing with the German for spots in the XI.
Muller is renowned for his determination and fighting spirit, though, and as such, it'd be unwise to assume he'll fall back to the fringes of the first-team.