Brazil star Lucas Moura says staying with Sao Paulo was big part of PSG deal

Lucas Moura: Opted to join PSG in January rather than Man United last summer

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Lucas Moura says that being allowed to stay at Sao Paulo until the end of the Brazilian season influenced his decision to join Paris St Germain.

Manchester United were close to finalising a lucrative move for the attacker before the 20-year-old opted to sign for the French club.

The deal allowed Moura to stay at Sao Paulo until the end of the current season in his home country.

This week Moura helped Sao Paulo claim the Copa Sudamericana, which ended in acrimony when opponents Tigre refused to reappear for the second half of the second leg following a clash between the two sides at half-time.

PSG boast Brazilian stars Thiago Motta and Thiago Silva in their ranks, and Moura revealed that fellow countryman Leonardo, the club's sporting director, was key to the deal.

"Manchester United last summer? We were very close to an agreement," said Moura. "But I finally signed at Paris for several reasons.

"For the challenge to build a great team in Paris, because there are a lot of Brazilian players at PSG and also because signing at PSG, I could stay at Sao Paulo until the end of the Brazilian season.

"Leonardo convinced me. He talked to my parents, told me I could stay until December and explained PSG's ambitions and objectives."