Samuel Eto'o has revealed he was close to joining an English club before moving to Inter Milan.
The Anzhi Makhachkala striker made the move from the San Siro to Russia this summer, where he'll earn an estimated £18.4 million a year.
However, Eto'o, who was linked with Manchester City and Chelsea this summer, could have moved to England, instead of Inter when given the opportunity in 2009.
"I admit that two years ago I was going to sign for an English club but Jose Mourinho (now at Real Madrid) and (Inter president) Massimo Moratti called me unexpectedly," said Eto'o.
"I have no regret in choosing Inter. It was hard to let the English team know about it but it seemed that they understood my decision."
Despite interest from Chelsea, reports suggest the move would have been to City, a club that at the time had seen a huge influx of investment help manager Mark Hughes sign Brazilian Robinho.
Chelsea's own financial muscle had seen them attract some of the world's best, the most recent of which being Spaniard Fernando Torres, but reports suggest the Londoners were never previously in for the Cameroon forward.
“Eto`o wound up at Inter – although, for the record, it was City who eventually pulled out of the deal once their self imposed 48 hour deadline had passed,” Guillem Balague revealed.
“Eto`o had sent four text messages to Hughes pleading for more time.”