Everton new-boy Kevin Mirallas has admitted he almost joined Arsenal this summer, but the lure of regular football with the Toffees helped him to think otherwise.
The Belgian completed his reported £5.3 million move from Greek side Olympiakos on Sunday, and the striker who netted an impressive 20 goals in 28 league starts last season seemed destined for the Emirates as Arsenal looked to reinforce their attacking lineup.
He told Everton’s official website:
Discussions were at quite an advanced stage with Arsenal but it was always clear it would be totally down to me to make the decision.
From the word go I was really impressed by the extent to which the manager wanted me here.
He showed a lot of confidence. I was convinced that what was important for me at this stage of my career was to get plenty of time on the field.
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The Belgium striker also revealed that his new manager David Moyes and international team-mate Marouane Fellaini were part of the deciding factors to move to Merseyside over North London. It was thought that compatriot and Gunners captain Thomas Vermaelen would be able to put his two pence in to convince the forward to sign for Arsenal, but it seems that it wasn’t meant to be, with Mirallas forgoing the chance for Champions League football and a shot at the Premier League title.
Gooners alike were getting excited about the possible acquisition of the player, especially with Van Persie’s exit as well as Park and possibly Chamakh’s eventual departures this summer. Wenger may have missed his man, but there are still other options out there. It seems a long shot to hope that the Frenchman will bid on Fernando Llorente, but fingers crossed as he could be a huge asset and is available at a cheap price too, as he enters the last year of his current contract with Athletic Bilbao
What are your thoughts? Is it a shame that Arsenal missed out on Mirallas or a blessing in disguise? Think Wenger will still buy another forward despite admitting he is in the market for a defender and midfielder? Feel free to comment below or in allArsenal’s forum in the transfers thread (Register and comment to win Arsenal’s new away shirt!)