Arsenal move in my mind – De Jong
New Barcelona midfielder Frenkie de Jong admits he believed he would play for Arsenal before agreeing the La Liga switch.
De Jong agreed to sign for the Spanish champions back in January, for a fee of around £75million from Eredivisie side Ajax.
He was one of the most impressive young midfielders in Europe last season and is now also a mainstay of the senior Dutch team, despite only being 22.
He was officially unveiled as a Barca player last week as the club look for long-term replacements in their midfield for the likes of Sergio Busquets.
However, the Dutchman admits he always imagined himself playing for Arsenal, and has cited the influence of Marc Overmars in wanting to represent the Gunners.
"In my mind I have had the following list for a long time: Ajax-Arsenal-Barcelona, call it the Marc Overmars route," De Jong told Voetbal International.
"But then again, if you can go directly to Barcelona, then you are right where you want to be. Faster than you ever dared to dream."
Dan McCarthy is a reporter who is very knowledgeable about football at all levels, and a keen Leeds United fan. He also follows darts, snooker, motorsport, and rugby league.