Date: 23rd January 2018 at 8:00pm
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Parma striker has confirmed that Arsenal did want to sign before he moved to the Italian club earlier this month.

The former Dutch U18 had been playing for Serie B side for the first half of the season, and came to the attention of the Gunners’ scouts. Speaking to, Da Cruz confirmed he was watched by Arsenal several times.

“Yes, I came on [to] Arsenal’s radar. Several scouts, including the head scout, have seen several matches of mine in recent months. I have been informed that their reports were positive. They were very interested, of course the head scout does not look at just anybody.”

“Was I surprised? Yes, because the Serie B is not with respect, and a year ago I was on the bench a few times or not even in the selection at [Dutch second division side] FC Dordrecht. If you are then linked to super-large European clubs a year later … It was a surprise.”

Despite being in huge demand from many clubs across Europe, the 21 year old opted to remain in Italy, and made the switch to another Serie B side instead. He finalised his £2m move to Parma on January 8th.

Da Cruz had been available on a free in the summer after leaving club FC Twente. His performances for not only attracted the attention of the Gunners, but also Brighton, Swansea, Southampton and Liverpool too.

In Serie B this season, the striker has scored five goals and provided four assists in 19 games.