Raphael Varane has revealed he rejected the chance to join Paris Saint-Germain in 2011 because he was not convinced by the heavyweight Ligue 1 club’s “project”.
The France international was one of the most sought-after youngsters at the time following an impressive season with Lens.
In addition to PSG, Manchester United and Real Madrid were also believed to be interested in signing him and he eventually opted to make the move to Estadio Santiago Bernabeu.
He will now take on his former suitors when Madrid visit Laurent Blanc’s French title-holders in the Champions League at the Parc des Princes on Wednesday.
“PSG were interested in signing me, but we never entered negotiations,” Varane told Le Parisien.
“The Qatari project at the club was all still a bit unclear to me. I could not see myself join PSG, because I did not know how they would develop.
“PSG did not suit me at the time and the move to Real Madrid was a logical choice.”
Varane, 22, has since developed into an important member of the first team at La Liga giants Madrid.
The centre-back has made over 100 appearances in all competitions for Los Blancos over the past four seasons.
In September 2014 he signed a contract renewal with Madrid that ties him to the club until June 2020.