Bayern Munich midfielder Franck Ribery was a Chelsea transfer target way back in 2009 and according to the Daily Express, they were willing to fork out €80m for him.
At the time, Bayern were somewhat struggling and were in a mini-turmoil as things weren’t going their way. Ribery was also in talks with Real Madrid for a potential move but ended up staying at the club as their new manager at the time, Louis Van Gaal, wanted him at the the Allianz Arena.
Reflecting on that situation, Ribery said, “I was on the verge of leaving, then had two, three conversations with (former general manager) Uli Hoeness and (chairman) Karl-Heinz Rummenigge. And they were really cool, I will never forget that.”
The Frenchman left Marseille for Bayern in 2007 for a hefty fee. He immediately found his feet at the club and managed to score an impressive 11 goals in 28 appearances for Bayern in the Bundesliga and helped them win the League by 10 points. His performances also won him the best player of that season, which vindicated the huge fee that Bayern paid for him. Back in 2009, transfer records were being created after Kaka and Cristiano Ronaldo moved to real for huge fees. Real Madrid were being linked with Ribery and even held talks with him but decided to go for Ronaldo instead and paid €94m for him.
Ribery is now a Bayer Munich legend and has lifted all the club accolades with them. He was close to winning the FIFA Ballon d’Or last season as he finished third; behind Ronaldo and Lionel Messi.
He is now a Bayern Munich legend and is just one short of scoring 100 goals for the club. The 31-year old is contracted with the club until 2017 and could finish his career there if he keeps playing the way he is doing right now.