Manchester United Missed Out On Ronaldinho For The Most Bleakly British Reason Possible

According to former midfielder Quinton Fortune, anyway

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It's strange to think that at one point in 2003, Brazilian legend Ronaldinho was a back-up option.

At the time, Barcelona president Joan Laporta was desperately trying to fight off competition from Real Madrid to sign David Beckham.

Ronaldinho, who had recently lit up the World Cup in South Korea & Japan, was merely a potential consolation prize. As we all know now, missing out on Becks proved to be a blessing in disguise for the Catalan club.

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But they very nearly missed out on both, as Manchester United were vying to secure his signature too.

And according to former midfielder Quinton Fortune, Alex Ferguson might have only failed to capture the Brazilian because of Manchester's typically dreary weather.

Talking to ManUtd.com, he said: "I think we got it wrong by bringing Ronaldinho in at the wrong time of year as it was raining that day he arrived at Manchester Airport. Maybe it was summer anyway but, if we'd have timed it with the right day, it could have been a different story.

"It would have been absolutely amazing to have him here. He's one of the greatest players ever to play football and entertained with his skill, fun and joy."

So let that be a lesson to Premier League managers on the hunt this summer: if you want to bring in a star man, make sure it's tins-and-sunburn in the park weather. Or just close the curtains.