Former Bayern Munich boss Jupp Heynckes says Toni Kroos deemed a move to Real Madrid rather than Manchester United better for his career.
Heynckes claims he tried to persuade the 24-year-old to remain at the Allianz Arena but admitted he was unable to stand in his way when Madrid came calling, while the player himself was not interested in a move to Old Trafford.
The midfielder joined the Spanish giants from Bayern in the summer for a fee reported to be anywhere between €25m and €30m, and has since been a revelation in Carlo Ancelotti’s star-studded line-up.
“Right now there is no better footballer in the world in his position and he plays the midfield role so cleverly,” Heynckes told Kicker.
“I’d rather he’d stayed at Bayern and I advised him to, but we spoke on the telephone during the World Cup and he told me the move was perfect. For him, on a personal level, it’s another step that suits him.”
Heynckes says he has not been surprised at how well the German international has adjusted to the demands of life at the Santiago Bernabeu.
“The top players like Cristiano Ronaldo, Karim Benzema and Gareth Bale know that they are even better when Toni is in the team.
“In addition, Carlo Ancelotti has said he’s never seen a team with such great character, so there haven’t been any problems for Toni to settle in,” he explained.