Arsene Wenger had a young [insert name of present-day world-class player here] as good as signed, only for the fledgling superstar to turn his back on the Emirates for another club.
The story’s as old as man.
We have photographic evidence of Yaya Toure at Arsenal, and we all know the tale of how “Zlatan doesn’t do auditions” was the reason why Ibrahimovic didn’t take up Wenger’s offer of a trial.
At Barcelona and Manchester City, Toure became one of the best central midfielders in Europe, and Ibrahimovic continues to score copious amounts of goals, regardless of the league he’s playing in.
Well there’s another story of how Wenger missed out on a player who would become not only the greatest of a generation, but one of the best we’ve ever seen.
So the story goes, a young Cristiano Ronaldo was shown around Arsenal’s London Colney training base, handed a Gunners shirt with his name on the back, while a £4million deal with Sporting Lisbon was struck.
But before the deal could be sewn up, United faced Sporting in a friendly, where Ronaldo played so well, he made John O’Shea wish he’d never even kicked a ball.
After that, Sir Alex Ferguson simply had to have the Portuguese trickster. We all know what happened next…
And unless you’re an Arsenal fan, you’ll probably find this story rather amusing… even if you have heard it a million times before.