Nottingham Forest academy graduate Jamaal Lascelles has suggested to the Getting Messi Podcast that he could have joined Arsenal or Everton.
The centre-back left the City Ground in 2015 having graduated through the youth ranks to make 65 appearances for the first-team.
Newcastle paid a fee in the region of £5 million to sign both Lascelles and goalkeeper Karl Darlow.
Things could have been different through, with the Derby-born defender now suggesting he could have signed for two other Premier League clubs.
He told the Getting Messi Podcast: “The Arsenal interest, it was there. I think it was definitely there. I cannot remember who my agent was at the time.
“Not much was fed back because I was 18 and concentrating on my job. My dad didn’t want it to effect me or my ego. That was kind of kept away from me.
“The Everton thing, I actually went to the training ground and had a look around and stuff.
“They were interested. I am not sure why it didn’t happen but they were interested as well. As a kid, there has always been paper talk and speculation.”
Lascelles proved costly Fawaz mistake
Forest supporters were up in arms when the former owner went behind Stuart Pearce’s back to offload a duo who were performing well at the time.
It’s fair to say that Lascelles is now worth far more than the measly fee which Forest received for his services five years ago.
The 27-year-old looked a class act when he made the step up to play first-team football at the City Ground.
He was mature beyond his years, comfortable in possession and was strong in the air.
It’s probably little surprise then that he’s now the captain of Newcastle and has made 175 appearances for the Magpies.
Lascelles has a contract worth £40,000-a-week at St James’ Park and one day might even earn himself an England call-up.
Arsenal or Everton could have proved attractive moves for the player when he departed Forest.
It seems unlikely that Lascelles will have any regrets given the exposure he’s had to the Premier League, however.