Manchester United passed on signing Fabinho to focus on specialist targets in the transfer window.
Fabinho joined Liverpool from Monaco on Monday night in a deal worth £39million but the suggestion the Brazilian rejected an approach from United at any stage is false.
It was revealed last year that United manager Jose Mourinho had ruled out a move for Fabinho, having identified Tottenham's Eric Dier and Nemanja Matic as his first and second-choice defensive midfield targets.
Mourinho's preference was to recruit an established Premier League player and Fabinho was also partly dismissed because he was a converted midfielder, having begun his Monaco career at right-back.
Dier was 'desperate' to join United but Spurs refused to budge and Chelsea eventually agreed to allow Matic to reunite with Mourinho on July 31.
Mourinho has settled on Fred as his principal holding midfield target this summer and United would prefer to conclude a deal for the Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder while he is in England with the Brazil national team this week.
According to MEN, United are close to completing the signing of the 25-year-old after he almost joined Manchester City in January.
Fabinho publicly declared his desire to join United last year. "It’s a tempting invitation," he said in an ESPN Brasil interview in late June.
"I would first talk to my agent, Monaco too, to decide everything is right. But it’s a great club, sure enough, I would think well about it."
United had no interest in signing Fabinho this summer or last, despite reports to the contrary.
Last June, an Italian journalist with close connections to Juventus erroneously claimed the Brazilian had agreed to join United after Juve officials failed to reach a breakthrough with the versatile Monaco midfielder.
Last week, a French reporter claimed United were 'in discussions with Fabinho' but they were not.
Clubs have previously fabricated United's interest in a player to smoke out a bidder and that tactic was used by Hoffenheim with Roberto Firmino in 2015 before he moved to Liverpool.
In the same summer, an Aston Villa official alleged to a newspaper reporter that United would sign Christian Benteke, despite United having no intention of doing so.
Within 24 hours, Liverpool had triggered the Belgian's £32.5million release clause.
Despite intense speculation surrounding a Fabinho to United move, there was no concrete evidence he was ever targeted by United under Mourinho, despite a clamor from a minority of supporters.