Luis Figo may have denied all knowledge of being allowed to leave Real, but he has admitted sounding out players at both Manchester United and Liverpool about a possible move to the Premiership.
Real Madrid coach Wanderley Luxemburgo dropped Figo to the bench for the latter stages of the Spanish league campaign, and the Portugese star is now being linked with a stint in England next season. He said last night: "I have always said that the Premiership is a competition I would like to play in one day and that’s not changed. The Premiership has improved so much over the last few years and many of the world’s best players are signing for clubs in England.
Figo has played the biggest part of his professional career in Spain, but feels he’ll have no problem with the transition to English football: "It’s very different to the Spanish League but I’m sure that I will be able to adapt to it if I ever move there. I have been linked with Liverpool and Manchester United and I think both of those clubs are fantastic. Almost every player would like to play for either of those teams and I am no different."
Although Manchester United have Figo’s compatriate Cristiano Ronaldo in their side they ended the last season without a trophy, unlike European Champions Liverpool. Figo says he has spoken to Ronaldo but he also has friends from Spain in the Liverpool camp: "Cristiano has talked to me about life at Manchester United and some of the Spanish players at Liverpool have given me references about how good it is at Anfield."
If Figo does come to play in England he’ll be expecting a decent pay packet, although he will be available on a free transfer. Neither Liverpool nor Manchester United would be willing to pay too much for a player that has undoubted talent but no Premiership experience and is heading towards the end of his career.