Every transfer window, our resident vice-president and outdated sporting director seems to either bait or antagonize the fans by listing players that he almost signed. For example, this is January's revelation:
Galliani: "We also tried to sign Griezmann last summer." @AntoGriezmann— AC Milan News (@Milanello) January 7, 2015
Granted, the old man is responsible for engineering the purchases and contract extensions of some of Milan's legendary players. He will always have that honor, as well as being one of the architects of Milan's dominance in the yesteryears. Regardless, the present Milan is not the Milan of old for a myriad of reasons. And it has to be admitted that this barren period was always on the horizon with the state of the San Siro, Italian football and Milan's own hazardous spending habits during winning times.
Those things aside, Galliani always does this and there's an extensive list of players that Milan "could have signed" but for one reason or the other didn't. The current reason, if I'm allowed to guess, is because of cheapness.
So as an exercise, I would like to list out some of my favorite almost signings with quotes from the vice-president himself:
“Not only did we dream of having him [Totti], we tried to get him..."
“We knew about him when he was a kid, but we didn’t succeed.
Alessandro Del Piero
"We nearly signed Del Piero in 1993 and failing to do that remains one of the great regrets of my career,"Neymar
"We also followed Neymar but he was too expensive for us."
And one from the big man himself, Berlusconi:
"I already told Adriano Galliani to start negotiations for Cristiano Ronaldo".
More than these are the ones where he professes that certain players will not leave or that Milan is not interested in a player who we eventually sign. Understandably this is all part of his transfer regimen and a way to keep prices low and teams away from targets. yet, for the ones about players that Milan could have signed, it feels almost sarcastic.
The list is endless, feel free to share your favorite ones.