Borussia Dortmund were reportedly left baffled by Manchester United's attempt to sign Nico Schulz on a season-long loan on deadline day.
The Red Devils had pursued BVB superstar Jadon Sancho all summer but failed to meet the German club's €120m valuation as they naively assumed they'd be able to reach a compromise with Dortmund before the transfer window slammed shut on Monday.
But perhaps it wasn't United's bizarre negotiation tactics which left the German giants the most befuddled, with ESPN (via talkSPORT) reporting that the Manchester club ended their pursuit of Sancho and instead offered to pay £900,000 to sign left-back Schulz on loan for the 2020/21 campaign.
Despite the 27-year-old playing second fiddle to Raphael Guerreiro under Lucien Favre, United's seemingly illogical approach was nonetheless rejected.
ESPN's report notes: ‘Sources said the move for Schulz led Dortmund to question the credentials of United’s recruitment and scouting team.
‘That United were keen on a player who has barely featured for Dortmund surprised the club, and the enquiry was knocked back.’
The Red Devils would sign Porto left-back Alex Telles in a £15m deal on the final day on the window, although this was a move in the pipeline long before their supposed offer for Schulz.
The German international joined Dortmund from Hoffenheim last summer for £23m but only played 11 times in the Bundesliga during his debut campaign and has struggled to settle at Signal Iduna Park.
United's move for Schulz may have been linked to late attempts of Brandon Williams to secure a loan move to Southampton, with the 20-year-old concerned about his lack of game time at Old Trafford.
The Red Devils could've viewed Schulz as a potential replacement if Williams did depart, but their approach for the out of favour 27-year-old is still baffling nonetheless.