Lucas Torreira’s performances for Sampdoria convinced Arsenal to invest a reported fee of £26m to bring him to the Emirates in 2018.
Prior to joining the Gunners, Napoli were one of the clubs interested in the midfielder and this was confirmed by the 23-year-old’s father earlier this year.
The Uruguay international’s agent Pablo Bentancur has now revealed Carlo Ancelotti’s side were keen on signing his client before he joined the Gunners.
“True, Napoli wanted him, but there was economic distance with the offer when compared to that of Arsenal,” Bentancur told Radio Marte, as quoted by Calciomercato.
“Ancelotti personally tried to take him to Napoli and if the negotiation with Arsenal had been missed, he would have come to Naples, I had promised. Arsenal, however, was a choice because their football suited his skills. Therefore, Torreira chose English football.”
The South American’s representative admitted the player was not pleased after missing an opportunity to join the Naples based club.
“Torreira was upset when he missed the chance to join Napoli. Why? Because he is Uruguayan. To tell you, he wants to end his career at Boca and Napoli is an environment very similar to that of Boca. Naples future destination? In football anything can happen,” the agent explained.
Unai Emery changed Torreira’s position this season and reports coming out of Italy suggested the former Serie A man was ‘not happy’ with his situation at Arsenal.
Regarding Torreira’s current situation, Bentancur said: “Torreira is doing well at Arsenal, although the change of role doesn’t make him happy, but it must be said that this year the whole team is not doing well.”
“It was difficult to take Torreira at the time, now I don’t know how things are, but I think Arsenal wants to retain him.”