10 big-name players Arsene Wenger claimed he looked at (but obviously didn't sign)

Arsene Wenger

After the Frenchman revealed he twice investigated signing N'Golo Kante, Ben Hooke takes a look at some of the other high-profile stars the Gunners boss failed to capture

1. Paul Pogba

We tried to get him to come here, but he very quickly signed for Juventus

Manchester United's £89m midfielder could have joined Arsenal earlier in his career if Wenger is to be believed.

"Things happened very quickly," the Frenchman revealed in 2014. "We were interested in him. We tried to get him to come here, but he very quickly signed for Juventus."

Still, at least they kept hold of Francis Coquelin.

Francis Coquelin, Paul Pogba

Every cloud has a silver lining

2. Yaya Toure

They could have nabbed one of the best midfielders around had things turned out differently

It's almost 12 years since Patrick Vieira departed, but Arsenal are still crying out for an all-action, powerful midfield leaderto replace him. Even more gallingly for supporters, they could have nabbed one of the best around had things turned out differently.

"It would be up at the top [of my list of regrets]," Wenger lamented when remembering the passport trouble that prevented Toure from joining the Gunners. "He had an agreement with us – and it's not because we didn't want to sign him that he went to Ukraine.”

So close, yet so far – again.

3. Luis Suarez

I used to think, 'What if I'd signed Luis Suarez' before?

- Arsene Wenger

Wenger was once asked if he'd ever wonder what might have happened if he'd signed Suarez from Liverpool. “Not now”, he said. “It happened to me before but not now.”  

Instead, the Gunners waited until he was a household name before bidding £40,000,001 in the belief that his Reds release clause would be triggered as a result. Owner John W. Henry wasn't too impressed.

4. Zlatan Ibrahimovic

The story of Ibrahimovic rejecting a trial at Arsenal because he "doesn't do auditions" isn't entirely true, but the north Londoners certainly did want to land the striker in his younger years (Malmo's director of football Hasse Borg actually advised Ibrahimovic not to attend the trial and told Wenger he either wanted to buy the player or he didn't). Another one that got away for poor Arsene.