But Gabriel Heinze evidently missed the memo in 2007, when he attempted to force a move to the Red Devils’ archrivals.
The defender was attempting to become the first player to immediately transfer between the two clubs since Phil Chisnall’s £25,000 departure to Anfield in 1964.
However, he did not anticipate Sir Alex Ferguson interfering and blocking the sale, prompting the player to seek a Liverpool-based legal firm.
United’s then-chief executive David Gill allegedly told Heinze’s agent, Roberto Rodriguez, that the left-back could depart for £6.8 million.
But United didn’t expect that offer to come from up the M62, where manager Rafa Benitez was attempting to bring the Argentina international to Anfield.
A £6.8m bid was made, but to Heinze’s chagrin, United rejected it, with Ferguson certain that a move to Merseyside was out of the question.
Ferguson stated at the time, “I can assure you, Liverpool will not be getting Gabriel Heinze.” We can put that to rest right now, and we have.
“We had a couple of offers for him that we turned down.” Heinze’s agents are always throwing the ball.
“However, regardless of what his agent thinks, we are in control.” I’m not sure what Gaby thinks because everything comes from his agent, but this has been going on for a year and a half.”
“We’re aware that he’s seeking legal counsel, but that’s good,” he added. I just hope it’s sound advise because we’re quite certain.
“I’m aware that he’s allegedly using Liverpool solicitors, but that doesn’t concern me.” He either has a case or he doesn’t.”
“It’s clear he’s a player we like and he’s a very good player,” Benitez said, perplexed by United’s refusal to trade Heinze to the Reds.
“That’s why they don’t want him to leave for us.” We made an offer, which they turned down. The lawyers are currently working on it, so we must wait.”
It was then revealed that Crystal Palace had been offered the opportunity to purchase Heinze and then quickly offload him to Liverpool, where they would receive £1 million in compensation for their pains.
In his diary Be Careful What You Wish For, talkSPORT host and ex-Eagles chairman Simon Jordan reported that Phil Alexander, the club’s CEO, received an approach from someone named James Green, who claimed to represent a South American agency called Soccer SA.
He explained, “The gist of the conversation was that this agent wanted Crystal Palace to buy Gabriel Heinze from Manchester United and then immediately sell him to Liverpool.”
“My stance was no way were we getting involved,” Jordan said, adding, “and I told Alexander to contact David Gill, Manchester United’s chief executive, and inform him of these attempted shenanigans, which he duly did.”