Forlan went on to become one of the best strikers to play in Europe and won the European Golden Boot in his first season at Villarreal.


But his time at Manchester United was lacklustre and he finally chose to leave Old Trafford to move to Villarreal as he was unlikely to play regular first-team football with the Red Devils.



Forlan conceded that leaving Manchester United was important as he needed to turn his career around and admits that it was a brilliant decision because of what he eventually achieved in Spain.


However, he claimed that he had offers to return to England and revealed that one of those proposals was made by his former Manchester United captain when he was the Sunderland manager.



Forlan told The Athletic: “I had to leave United for Villarreal. Something inside told me I needed to turn a page, start again.


“And I’m glad I did, that season turned everything around for me, but I could have gone back to England several times.



“Roy Keane called me when he was at Sunderland. ‘Diego’, he said. ‘I know you like a beach — we have one here at Sunderland’.”


Keane got Sunderland promoted to the Premier League, but was eventually sacked in 2008 after a poor run of form.