Liverpool fans and journalists who report on the Reds have been crowing a famous victory this week, claiming that their club beat fierce rivals Manchester United to the punch when they completed the £39m signing of Brazilian midfielder Fabinho this week.

When sharing the initial news of Fabinho's arrival on Twitter, Daily Mirror reporter David Maddock instantly declared that it was 'after choosing Liverpool over Manchester United'.


This was no small detail or throwaway comment hidden away somewhere in paragraphs of text about what the accomplished former Monaco man will bring to Anfield. Instead, it was deemed necessary to make this apparent 'fact' known immediately.

Point scoring through the media is big. And so while those connected to Liverpool want to see it as a win against their biggest enemy, those connected to the enemy have shrugged it off by claiming there was actually no battle there to be won.

The line from Manchester is that following brief interest in Fabinho last summer, United were absolutely not 'rejected' by the player prior to his move to Liverpool.

For the Manchester Evening News (MEN), journalist Samuel Luckhurst writes, "... the suggestion the Brazilian rejected an approach from United at any stage is false."

United were in the market for a defensive midfielder this time last year and Fabinho was a heavily rumoured target at that time. The player admitted feeling flattered by the speculation and there was even the usual social media nonsense after his wife, Rebeca Tavares, 'liked' a mocked up image posted on Instagram of her husband wearing a United shirt.

In April of this year, it was alleged by The Sun that Fabinho was 'keen' on joining United. However, even if that claim was true it doesn't mean the interest was reciprocated from Old Trafford.

And where United moved on from Fabinho last year by signing Nemanja Matic, their need for a new midfielder this summer has been negated by the widely expected £52m arrival of Fred, one of the players keeping Fabinho out of the Brazil national side, from Shakhtar Donetsk.

According to the MEN, United 'passed' on Fabinho this time around to 'focus on specialist targets'.

Ultimately it comes down to who you believe more, but did Liverpool really 'beat' Manchester United to the signing of Fabinho? Probably not.