Crystal Palace winger, Wilfried Zaha, has admitted he was desperate to join Arsenal in the summer of 2019 and wonders why they chose to sign Nicolas Pepe instead.

Zaha, speaking with Jamie Carragher on The Greatest Games podcast, also said clubs should prioritise signing players that they are already familiar with.

The Ivorian spoken with then Gunners boss Unai Emery ahead of the 2019/2020 season, and he thought that he was on his way to the Emirates.

“I had a conversation with the manager, actually.

“He was just like, ‘we don’t need to go through much’. He’s seen me play, he knows I can change games at any time and stuff like that. It was like, ‘yeah, we’d love to have you’.

“And I was just like, ‘I’d love to come’.

“The conversation was rather straightforward because I’ve played against him when he’s managed Arsenal, he’s seen what I can do, he’s seen my work rate, what I can add to the team.

“Obviously, it was up to the club who they chose, and obviously they chose Pepe over me,” Zaha said.


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