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Memphis Depay Names Manchester City, Chelsea Among Clubs He'd Like to Join

Tom Sunderland@@TomSunderland_Featured ColumnistJanuary 29, 2019

LILLE, FRANCE - DECEMBER 1: Memphis Depay of Olympique Lyon  during the French League 1  match between Lille v Olympique Lyon at the Stade Pierre Mauroy on December 1, 2018 in Lille France (Photo by Angelo Blankespoor/Soccrates/Getty Images)
Soccrates Images/Getty Images

Former Manchester United winger Memphis Depay has admitted he wouldn't have an issue crossing the divide between rivals after naming English giants Manchester City and Chelsea among the teams he'd like to join.

The Netherlands international left Old Trafford for Lyon in January 2017 but has been open about his intentions to make another step up in his career. He reaffirmed that desire in an interview with Helden (h/t ESPN FC's Jonathan Johnson) but left his former Premier League employers off the list:

Jonathan Johnson @Jon_LeGossip

Lyon's Memphis Depay: "OL is a big club, but not 1 of Europe's top 5. I want to go to a club like Real Madrid, Barcelona, Chelsea, Manchester City, PSG, or Bayern Munich. I want a city that suits me, a club that suits me & a team that wants to play football." https://t.co/Uo7OqMilPj

Depay was particularly complimentary of a certain Spanish powerhouse: “I always talk about Real Madrid, a royal club, white shirts with gold. But I’m focused right now on Lyon, and then we see where I end up.”

The remarks won't enamour the player with the Old Trafford faithful who once supported him, although one might forgive the forward for being left feeling unfulfilled in his previous experience with the Red Devils.

Depay scored seven goals in 53 appearances for United, all of which came under Jose Mourinho's predecessor and the manager who signed him, Lous van Gaal. Mourinho handed the Dutchman eight appearances before moving him on to Ligue 1, where he has been a much greater success.

Sportswriter Muhammad Butt joked the player's aspirations may be slightly overreaching but saw sense in some of the transfers mentioned:

Muhammad Butt @muhammadbutt

also... he'd actually be a really smart pick-up for Bayern?????? and Chelsea?????

Depay has been granted more attacking responsibilities and transformed into a more versatile player at the Groupama Stadium, netting 33 times and recording 35 assists in 97 outings for Lyon.

Having returned to face City this season in the UEFA Champions League, the new and improved Depay caught attention in September when he hinted his loyalties in Manchester still belonged to United, via Hayters TV:

Hayters TV @HaytersTV

"The city of Manchester is still Red!" 🔴 Former @ManUtd forward @Memphis Depay aims cheeky dig at @ManCity ahead of tomorrow's @ChampionsLeague clash. 😉 #UCL #MCIOL https://t.co/SRLi8yfxB3

Joe Bray of the Manchester Evening News reported Mourinho insisted on there being a buyback clause as part of Depay's move to Lyon, so they would presumably have first refusal on his purchase.

Though seemingly not picky in terms of which club it may be, Depay sounds passionate about wanting to join an elite outfit next in his career, and he's willing to put previous connections aside to attain that.

City may not be crying out for his contribution as things stand, but they and Chelsea may be pleased to know they at least have Depay's respect in the event they wish to pursue a deal down the line.

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