According to Lazio president Claudio Lotito, Manchester United forward Mason Greenwood “wanted” to join the Serie A outfit this summer.
It was revealed a few weeks ago that Man Utd were planning to bring Greenwood back into the fold, but they performed a dramatic U-turn following serious backlash from fans, pundits and staff members.
Greenwood has been suspended by Man Utd since the start of 2022 and he was facing charges relating to attempted rape and assault. This was until the Crown Prosecution Service decided to discontinue this case in February 2023 after the withdrawal of key witnesses meant there was no longer a realistic chance of conviction.
The 21-year-old has been linked with a move to Turkey throughout this summer but it was claimed before Friday’s transfer deadline that Serie A outfit Lazio were making a ‘late blitz’ for the attacker.
This move did not end up going through and Greenwood joined La Liga side Getafe on a season-long loan instead.
Lazio president Lotito has now insisted that they “tried” their hardest to sign Greenwood.
“I tried until the last minute,” Lotito told La Lazio Siamo Noi.
He also directed blame at Man Utd over the failed move, saying: “They didn’t countersign in time. He wanted to come to Lazio.”
Transfer guru Fabrizio Romano has confirmed that Man Utd will be paying a “big part of Greenwood’s salary” while he is at Getafe.
“Another interesting story from Deadline Day was Mason Greenwood. He was very close to joining Lazio, but it was never a done deal, and it collapsed late on. The Italian transfer window closed at 8pm, and after contacts later during the night, Greenwood joined Getafe instead,” Romano told Caught Offside.
“Greenwood will spend the season on loan in La Liga, he will be back at Manchester United in 2024, and until then they will cover more than 50% of the player’s wages. So a big part of Greenwood’s salary will be paid by United, and then he will come back to Old Trafford.
“For this season, this was the kind of solution United were looking for, but the situation beyond 2024 still has to be clarified.”
Getafe boss Jose Bordalas meanwhile has indicated that they are planning to “help” Greenwood to “recover his professional status”.
“Everyone knows what happened and appropriate measures were taken. Everyone knows how it ended, with a non-convictory sentence,” Bordalas said in his press conference.
“He is a footballer of a very high level and arrives at Getafe with enormous enthusiasm.”
He continued: “I can only speak at a footballing level.
“We all know the potential he has. He is a very young boy and we hope that he adapts to a very different League. Surely he wants to recover his professional status and Getafe can help him in that sense.”