Manchester United had blocked the transfer of Leonardo Bonucci this summer despite Jose Mourinho’s initial wish to reunite with the Italian international.

According to a shocking report from The Sun, Manchester United pulled the plug on Jose Mourinho’s pursuit of Leonardo Bonucci earlier this summer. It is believed that the Italian international was not deemed value for money by the United hierarchy despite Jose’s initial wish to reunite with the highly rated defender this season.

Bonucci was targeted as one of the best candidates to bolster United’s defensive department this summer, joining the likes of Jerome Boateng, Toby Alderweireld, Harry Maguire amongst many other.

In fact, Mourinho was hugely impressed with Bonucci, thanks to his consistent performances in the Italian top flight and thus, he was keen to sign the Italian international with whom he had worked with during their time together at Inter Milan.

However, the Manchester United board had other ideas, deeming Bonucci as not enough value for money, especially due to his disappointing one year stint with AC Milan last season.

As a result, Ed Woodward pulled the plug on Bonucci’s chase despite the fact that United were devoid of options in the market with all three of Boateng, Alderweireld and Maguire opting to stay at their respective clubs.

Currently regarded as one of the best centre-halves in world football, Bonucci initially made his mark at Juventus, making a total of 322 appearances during his seven-year stint at the club.

AC Milan's defender Leonardo Bonucci from Italy warms up before the UEFA Europa League football match AC Milan vs AEK Athens at the "San Siro Stadium" in Milan on October 19, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / MARCO BERTORELLO (Photo credit should read MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP/Getty Images)

Bonucci endured a difficult campaign at AC Milan last season. (Photo credit: MARCO BERTORELLO/AFP/Getty Images)

His defensive partnership with Giorgio Chiellini and Andrea Barzagli, in particular, helped the Old Lady not only win several trophies on the domestic level but also make a huge impact in the UEFA Champions League.

However, his move to AC Milan last summer marked a huge dent to his polished career as he struggled to mark his impact at San Siro. As a result, he was made available by the Rossonerri earlier this summer as he ultimately rejoined Juventus in a swap deal worth £31 million.

As for Manchester United, the deterrent that came in the way of signing Bonucci this summer might have been a viable one for a number of reasons. At the ripe old age of 31, it could have become extremely difficult for him to not just thrive but to actually settle into England, having spent his whole career in his native Italy. And especially given his struggles at AC Milan, one would expect him to recede into further mediocrity in the fast-paced Premier League football.

Therefore, United were definitely wise to pass on the opportunity of signing Bonucci, who is better suited to the slower and more tactical Serie A. And even though the Red Devils have struggled this season due to their lack of solidity at the back, the upcoming winter transfer window could once again present them with an opportunity of signing a top class centre-back as they look to make a strong recovery, following a disappointing start to the season.