Borussia Dortmund coach Jurgen Klopp has revealed he offered Shinji Kagawa a return to the Champions League finalists last season but said he rejected a move to stay at Manchester United.
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Kagawa joined United last year after helping Dortmund to back-to-back Bundesliga titles, and Klopp has said he wanted the Japan international to replace Mario Gotze, who joined Bayern Munich in April.
However, Kagawa, who scored 29 goals in his two seasons at the Westfalenstadion, was swift to say that he was not interested.
“This is not an issue for him this year,” Klopp told Sky Sports News in Germany. “This is not an issue for us this year.”
Earlier this month, the player, his agent and both Dortmund and Manchester United had indicated that an imminent return to BVB was not in the offing. Klopp, though, revealed that, following the news of Gotze’s departure, he had asked the 24-year-old if he would be interested in returning this summer.
He added: “It became clear fairly quickly that Shinji wants to succeed in Manchester next season. I would have never expected a different answer, but you at least have to ask.”
Kagawa scored six goals in his debut campaign at Old Trafford and won the Premier League title but has said he was not happy with his performances for United.
Klopp criticised former United manager Sir Alex Ferguson for his deployment of Kagawa, telling The Guardian in May: "Shinji Kagawa is one of the best players in the world and he now plays 20 minutes at Manchester United – on the left wing! My heart breaks. Really, I have tears in my eyes."