Real Madrid coach Jose Mourinho claims he came within hours of becoming England boss in 2007.
The Portuguese has repeatedly spoken about his passion for English football and recently confirmed his desire to return to management in England to take care of “unfinished business”.
And the former Chelsea boss has now revealed only a last-minute U-turn prevented him from taking over the England national team following Steve McClaren’s sacking four years ago.
Mourinho told l’Equipe: “I was hours away - I almost signed up for the England national team.
“But at the last minute I began thinking, 'I am going to coach a national side, there will be one match a month and the rest of the time I will be in my office or overseeing matches.
“And then to have to wait until the summer to compete in a European Championship or a World Cup'? No, it wasn't for me.
“So at the last moment I pulled back, preferring to wait for the right job to come along, a good club, a challenge that could motivate me. That was Inter (Milan).”
The 48-year-old went on to guide Inter Milan to an historic Serie A, Champions League and Coppa Italia treble in 2010 before heading to Madrid.