Jerome Boateng has said he turned down Manchester United in the summer because not everything was "in place" for them to be a more attractive proposition than current club Bayern Munich.
"I had enquiries from PSG and Manchester United. I did not want just to get away from Bayern, but I was thrilled to try a new challenge. I feel well at Bayern. It's one of the biggest clubs in the world.
"I called Jose Mourinho, I told him that his interest was an honour for me and thanked him for trying so hard for me.
"I explained to Jose that it's difficult to leave Bayern, and if I do, everything has to be in place to top this club."
The Red Devils may be one of the biggest and wealthiest clubs in the world, but Bayern have given the defender an enormous platform for success.
In seven years with the Bavarian outfit, Boateng has won six Bundesliga titles, three DFB-Pokals and the UEFA Champions League, a competition in which Bayern regularly reach the latter stages.
United have had some success since Sir Alex Ferguson left in 2013, with silverware coming in the form of the FA Cup, League Cup and UEFA Europa League, but they're far from the dominant force they were under the Scot.
They've struggled to make the most of their talent, so the team has neither been as convincing nor entertaining as a number of Ferguson's sides were as a result.
Mourinho has taken his share of the blame for that, and as the Mirror's John Cross noted on Sunday Supplement, he has done little to project a harmonious image of the club with the way he has conducted himself during United's poor start to the season:
Executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward has also been the target of fans' ire after a summer transfer window in which United's only recruits were Fred, Diogo Dalot and Lee Grant:
All in all, the club's current problems on and off the pitch do not make it appear an inviting environment for players to join.
United's size and resources will always carry appeal, but to those such as Boateng who are already at successful, well-run Champions League clubs, it's hardly a surprise for them to realise the grass isn't always greener.
The Red Devils need to resolve their issues not only for the good of the team and the club, but also to ensure they don't miss out on future signings as a result.