New Everton signing Kevin Mirallas revealed on Tuesday that he turned down the chance to move to Arsenal after Gunners’ manager Arsene Wenger failed to guarantee him enough time on the pitch.
The Belgian international striker, who was signed from Greek champions Olympiakos for £6 million ($9.5m) last week, added that he took advice from national team colleague Marouane Fellaini before opting to sign on at Goodison Park.
“Discussions were at quite an advanced stage with Arsenal but it was always clear it would be totally down to me to make the decision,» said the 24-year-old.
“I was convinced that what was important for me at this stage of my career, embarking on a new league, is to get plenty of time on the field.
“I had a possibility of playing more games and longer periods with Everton.”
On Fellaini’s influence he said: «Marouane being here was also decisive in making my decision also.
“We had a couple of phone conversations and it definitely influenced my decision.
“He convinced me the club was an ideal fit for me and hopefully it is a place where I can exploit my talents and grow as a player and perform well.”
Mirallas, who signed a four-year deal on Sunday, was presented to the Goodison Park crowd before Monday night’s 1-0 victory over Manchester United in which Fellaini netted the winning goal.