Lorient midfielder Alain Traore believes his failure to earn a work permit at Manchester United has worked in his favour.
The 23-year-old playmaker took in a trial at Old Trafford back in 2005.
The Burkina Faso international was unable to get the relevant paperwork processed to complete a switch to England and has ended up plying his trade in the French top-flight - first at Auxerre and now at Lorient.
Traore is delighted with the way things have turned out, with it possible for him to look back now and appreciate that making an impact at United would have been difficult.
"Do I regret having joined Auxerre rather than Manchester United? Not at all," Traore told L'Equipe.
"At Auxerre I played with the reserves, what would United have done? Sent me back to Africa?
"During my month in Manchester I played one match and all of the professionals watched us and I met with Alex Ferguson.
"Of course I wanted to stay, but there was a problem with my work permit.
"I would have had to be sent on loan to Belgium for six months and my mother refused. She preferred Auxerre."