Ed Woodward reportedly believed Jurgen Klopp was close to sealing a move to Manchester United after the German attended three meetings about the Old Trafford job.
Klopp, who was still the manager at Borussia Dortmund at the time, arrived at Liverpool in October 2015 and has led the Reds to Champions League glory and their highest-ever Premier League points tally.
The newspaper says that the Red Devils held three meetings with Klopp about succeeding David Moyes, with the discussions leading executive vice-chairman Woodward to believe that he was close to getting his first-choice appointment.
As a club insider told the paper: “Ed thought Klopp was the right man. Ed thought Klopp was going to come. But right at the end, he felt he owed it to Dortmund to stay for one more year.”
In the end, United chose to appoint Louis van Gaal as Moyes’ successor, with the Dutchman leading the club to an FA Cup triumph in the 2015/16 campaign.