Hull City made a £2.5 million bid for Edinson Cavani — four years before he became the fifth most expensive footballer in history.
Former Hull City manager Phil Brown has revealed he tried to sign the Uruguayan from Palermo in 2009.
Instead, Cavani moved to Napoli the following year and, after getting 104 goals in three years for them, joined Paris Saint-Germain for €64 million this summer.
But Brown, who also tried to bring Manchester City’s new signing Alvaro Negredo to the KC Stadium four years ago, said he could have gone to Hull instead.
“We were in the Premier League and full of ambition under chairman Paul Duffen,” Brown told the Daily Star Sunday. “My chief scout Bob Shaw and assistant manager Brian Horton went to watch Cavani, who was available at Palermo.
“They recommended him and we offered £2.5 million. I remember the negotiations and it was a deal with a number of clauses in the contract. When it didn’t happen, we switched to Negredo, who at the time was at Real Madrid. That was going to be a loan for the season.
“We were going to pay £12 million, plus his wages, then Real were going to buy him back for £13 million, but Cavani ¬eventually went to Napoli and Negredo signed for Seville.
“Why didn’t they come to Hull? The club was not big enough. In Negredo’s case, you were talking about ¬going from Real Madrid to Hull City. But the important thing was that we were ahead of the game in terms of spotting these players. That’s where we were at at Hull City.”
Having failed to sign Cavani or Negredo, Hull were relegated from the Premier League in the 2009-10 season. Brown, who was sacked in March 2010, is now manager of League Two side Southend.