When covering the South American media, we often see quotes from players who nearly moved to Premier League sides, and these stories made a big mark on their life.
This is the case of Peruvian midfielder Rafael Guarderas, who plays for Universitário. Speaking to America TV this week, he recalled the time he was close to signing for Manchester City.
The 26-year-old was a teenager at the time, and was supposed to join the Premier League side’s academy in 2013. He even has a story about when his manager found out about the interest.
“It was not for the main team, but the reserve or a category of Manchester City,” said Guarderas (via Libero).
“Yes there was an approach, what’s more, they mentioned it in a game. I remember I was concentrating with Chirinos and we were just seeing a club match on ESPN and they mention: ‘The player Rafael Guarderas is being followed by Manchester City’.
He looked surprised and with a ‘what was that?’ face.”
But just like many South Americans, Guarderas failed to get a work permit. Libero writes that the FA wanted him to have caps for the national team while he only had one appearance for Universitário.
At the age of 26, Guarderas has made a few moves between clubs, but never managed to leave Peru. He was also never called up for the national team, having only a few appearances for the U19 squad.
“The truth is that I’d have liked to go out. Unfortunately things did not happen. One of my main goals continues to be going abroad,” he says.