Ajax goalkeeper Andre Onana has revealed that he also talked to Arsenal and Chelsea before making the switch from Barcelona to the Netherlands.
The Cameroon international was spotted by Samuel Eto’o’s foundation at a young age, and he then moved to Barcelona’s academy at 13 before he switched to Ajax in January 2015.
Speaking in an interview with ELF Voetbal magazine, Onana explained that the influence of former Arsenal winger, and current head of youth development at Ajax, Marc Overmars influenced his decision to move to the Eredivisie side:
“It impressed me that Marc Overmars really worked to sign me. But the most important thing I found was that Ajax really give young players a chance. That was the decisive factor. Chelsea and Arsenal also showed interest, just as a series of Spanish clubs. But I doubted that I would play.”
He initially spent 18 months with Jong Ajax, playing in the Dutch second division and making 39 appearances. He then made the step up to the Ajax first team this season, establishing himself as the number one under manager Peter Bosz after first choice keeper Jasper Cillessen departed the club for Barcelona. So far this season, Onana has made 31 appearances, conceding 19 and keeping an impressive 17 clean sheets.