Galliani: AC Milan nearly signed Xavi and Totti

The AC Milan chief has revealed how close the club came to securing the services of Francesco Totti and Xavi, and reflects on what could have been for Andriy Shevchenko
AC Milan vice president Adriano Galliani revealed the Italian giants were close to capturing Francesco Totti and Xavi prior to the duo joining their respective clubs.

The 68-year-old has played a prominent role in the acquisition of some of the Rossoneri's finest talent over the last three decades, and Galliani claims to have almost brought another two legends of the modern game to San Siro.

"Was Totti close to signing for AC Milan? As a kid, yes, but not recently. We were closer in bringing Xavi to the club, there was even a contract. I was dealing with the father of the player at the time but did not realize I also had to deal with his mother ..." he told Gazzetto dello Sport.

Galliani then paid tribute to Totti, who became Serie A's second-joint top goalscorer of all time, when he scored his 225th goal against Genoa on Sunday, which puts him level with Gunnar Nordahl.

However, the Milan chief expressed his sorrow that former Rossoneri great Andriy Shevchenko did not spend long enough in Italy to stake his claim for Silvio Piola's all-time Serie A record of 274 goals.

"He [Totti] equaled Nordahl's record, who was our star and he only has Silvio Piola infront of him so congratulations," he added.

"I always regret that if my friend Andriy Shevchenko had not left Italy, he would have probably beaten Piola's record."