Juventus coach Massimiliano Allegri claims he turned down the chance to succeed Zinedine Zidane at Real Madrid before Julen Lopetegui was appointed at the Santiago Bernabeu.
Last month, Zidane resigned from his post just five days after guiding Madrid to a third consecutive Champions League crown, bringing an end to a short but extremely successful two-and-a-half-year spell.
It was announced on Tuesday that Spain coach Lopetegui had agreed terms on a three-year deal with the European champions and was due to take over after the World Cup, only for the Royal Spanish Football Federation to dismiss the 51-year-old 24 hours later.
Fernando Hierro will instead guide La Roja at the finals in Russia, but the story could have been very different had Allegri - who recently led Juve to their fourth straight Serie A title under his stewardship and seventh overall - accepted the offer from Madrid president Florentino Perez.
La vittoria ha sempre sapori diversi: i ragazzi se la sono meritata giorno dopo giorno, partita dopo partita. CAMPIONI! pic.twitter.com/UJOfulJeuH— Massimiliano Allegri (@OfficialAllegri) May 13, 2018
When asked if he had rejected Madrid, Allegri told Sky Sport Italia: "Let's say I said yes to Juventus.
"I spoke to the [Madrid] president once, and I said that out of respect for the [Juve] president [Andrea Agnelli], to whom I'd given my word, and Juventus, I'd be staying at Juventus.
"It was a decision I'd already taken, and even if other things can happen in life I'd say that I made the decision to stay at Juventus and respected what I'd said, without considering other options.
"I have to thank the Real Madrid president, though, for giving me the chance to go there."
Allegri also hinted that he had been contacted by Chelsea regarding the possibility of replacing Antonio Conte at Stamford Bridge.
"Let's say that the decision to stay at Juventus had already been taken, while thanking the ones who sought me out," he said.
"I've always said that the president will be the first to know if I want to leave, and the president will have to tell me if he wants to make a change."
|Fabinho to get chance against Red Star, says Klopp|
|River Plate 0 Gremio 1: Michel header gives Brazilians edge in semi|
|Mourinho concerned by Lukaku drought|
|Benzema: I know I must score more goals|
|Maybe journalists criticise because they can´t play football – Marcelo defends Lopetegui|
|Manning on trade rumours: It´s hard to imagine being with another organisation|
|Shaw: Man United showed too much respect to Juve|
|CAF Champions League Review: Al Ahly to face ES Tunis in final|
|76ers star Simmons dealing with back tightness|
|Roma boss Di Francesco hails ´extraordinary´ Dzeko|
|Pizzi and Jardel rue Benfica´s Ajax reverse|
|Championship Review: Leaders held at home, Smith suffers first Aston Villa defeat|
|Mourinho suggests Manchester United must spend to rejoin European elite|
|Manchester City reached their peak against Shakhtar - Guardiola|
|I really missed that winning feeling – Kroos|
|Lopetegui believes Real Madrid win can be turning point|
|Allegri: Juventus still making too many mistakes|
|Cole leads unbeaten Avellino to overtime victory|
|Mourinho hails ´amazing´ Chiellini and Bonucci after Juventus outclass United|
|Simeone glad to have Costa back for Dortmund clash|
|Lopetegui to remain in charge for El Clasico - Butragueno|
|Isner saves two match points to beat Norrie, Federer grinds out victory|
|Icardi happy at Inter ahead of Barca return|
|Marcelino satisfied with point after Valencia hold on at Young Boys|
|Hoffenheim 3 Lyon 3: Joelinton rescues a point after Kramaric´s double|
|Ajax 1 Benfica 0: Last-gasp Mazraoui seals dramatic win|
|Roma 3 CSKA Moscow 0: Dzeko turns on the style|
|Kovac lauds dominant Bayern|
|Shakhtar Donetsk 0 Manchester City 3: Silva sparkle to dominant display|
|Manchester United 0 Juventus 1: Dybala downs Mourinho´s men on Ronaldo´s return|
|Real Madrid 2 Viktoria Plzen 1: Benzema and Marcelo´s goals give holders first win in six|
|Lakers´ Rondo denies spitting on Rockets´ Paul|
|Robben and Rafinha want more from Bayern|
|Federer survives Krajinovic scare to maintain Basel run|
|Green accuses NBA of double standards, calls Lakers-Rockets suspensions ´garbage´|
|New York Giants send Apple to Saints|
|Morgan aims to solve Colombo mystery after record ODI defeat|
|AEK Athens 0 Bayern Munich 2: Lewandowski helps to further ease Kovac woes|
|Young Boys 1 Valencia 1: Hoarau penalty denies Marcelino´s men|
|Mourinho walks to Old Trafford as United arrive late again for Champions League|
|Bale and Benzema back for Madrid as Lopetegui rings changes|
|Carr denies ´fractured relationship´ with Raiders team-mates|
|De Bruyne to start for Manchester City against Shakhtar Donetsk|
|France lose Le Roux and Fofana for November Tests|
|Martino to leave Atlanta United amid Mexico links|
|Pochettino cautious over Eriksen return|
|Ancelotti an inspiration for PSG boss Tuchel|
|Persepolis 1 Al Sadd 1 (2-1 agg): Iranians into first AFC Champions League final|
|Wales boss Gatland returns to New Zealand after father´s death|
|Sri Lanka hand England their heaviest ODI defeat|
|Nuggets guard Will Barton undergoes surgery|
|Surprise package Svitolina closes in on semi-final berth|
|Alexander-Arnold targets glory at home and abroad|
|Pogba relishing emotional Juventus reunion|
|Alba hopes Lopetegui keeps Real Madrid job|
|Valverde not expecting Messi magical recovery|
|Wozniacki calms fears over knee injury|
|Maybe it´s my interviews - Klopp on Liverpool´s room for improvement|
|Language no barrier to Dortmund dangermen Reus and Alcacer|
|EPCR confirms no replay of Bath-Toulouse Champions Cup fixture|
|F1 Raceweek: Five the magic number as Hamilton eyes Mexico repeat|
|RFU to introduce in-season breaks for players|
|Nainggolan misses Barcelona trip|
|Wozniacki battles through knee complaint to down Kvitova|
|Alcacer: Two seasons at Barcelona not lost|
|Henderson, Keita to miss Liverpool´s Red Star clash|
|Khabib holds talks over Mayweather Moscow fight|
|Wolf in for Titz as Hamburg try to stop slump|
|Davies released from Wales squad as Evans comes in|
|Mbappe on track to match Messi and Ronaldo, says Giuly|