Ferguson admits interest in Villa

Manchester United boss Sir Alex Ferguson has revealed he was interested in signing Spain's David Villa before the start of the World Cup.

Villa scored his fifth goal of the tournament against Paraguay on Saturday to set up a World Cup semi-final clash with Germany on Wednesday.

And Ferguson has admitted he looked to lure the red-hot former Valencia hitman to Old Trafford before he finalised a £35 million move to Barcelona in May.

GEAR: Get a David Villa shirt

"We've looked at a few options," the Red Devils' boss explained. "We did consider David Villa but he was always going to Barcelona.

"I just don't believe there is value out there at the moment. I'm very happy with the strength of our squad as it is."

United’s lack of depth up-front last season was seen by many as the reason why they surrendered the Premier League title to Chelsea, with out-of-sorts striker Dimitar Berbatov coming in for the fiercest criticism from pundits and Manchester United fans alike.

But with doubts over the Bulgarian’s form and Wayne Rooney’s fitness following a dismal World Cup with England, Ferguson moved swiftly to dismiss claims his squad lacks firepower by leaping to the defence of Rooney in particular.

"There's nothing wrong with the lad or his fitness," Ferguson continued. "He's relaxing on holiday in Barbados and I expect him to come back refreshed for the new season."

Manchester United’s only bit of business so far this summer has been the arrival of highly-rated 22-year-old Mexican striker Javier Hernandez from Guadalajara.

By James Martini

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