Atalanta president Antonio Percassi has opened up on the details of Manchester United’s year-long pursuit of summer signing Amad Diallo.
The arrival of Diallo formed part of a busy deadline day of activity for Manchester United and will join up with is new teammates in January after a deal was agreed with Atalanta, the Premier League side agreeing a deal worth up to £37m for the teenager who has made just three senior appearances to date.
There had been little speculation linking the 18-year-old with a move to Manchester before the deal was announced on the transfer window’s final day, though Percassi has revealed the two clubs had been in discussions over a ‘crazy’ deal for ‘almost a year’.
“The negotiation with Manchester United lasted almost a year,” Percassi told L’Eco di Bergamo.
“The details and scenarios are crazy. Meeting after meeting we learned unimaginable things.
“This leads to the growth of the club and enriches the work of everyone, from the general manager, Umberto Marino, to the entire staff.”
— Manchester United (@ManUtd) October 6, 2020
Diallo had impressed for Atalanta during the UEFA Youth League last season and played in both legs of the club’s clash against Manchester City, his performances soon attracting transfer interest from the opposite side of the city – Diallo having scored and assisted in the game in the game at City’s Academy Stadium.
Percassi spoke on the details of the deal and says his side have ‘learned a lot’ from the process after accepting an offer too good to refuse, suggesting Atalanta have struck a fine deal regardless of whether Diallo fulfils his potential in English football.
“A few days after the Youth League game against Manchester City, the other Manchester contacted us.
“They had followed him, the real negotiation started. We went twice to England. The text of the final agreement is a contractual masterpiece.
“The professionals involved in the operation are of a high level. In terms of negotiations, we have learned a lot.
“And it is above all thanks to (CEO) Luca’s (Percassi) work that we arrived at the final figures. It was an operation we couldn’t refuse.
“If the boy becomes great, we will have recognition for a long time. If he’s not lucky, we’re protected.”