The Portuguese forward is just one of a number of household names such as Angel di Maria, Yaya Toure and Zlatan Ibrahimovic who almost joined the Gunners but ultimately didn’t.
It all happened before his move to Premier League rivals Manchester United in 2003, with Ronaldo as a 17-year-old already experiencing action in North London as a result of a one-week trial.
It wasn’t specified how much Ronaldo’s former club Sporting Lisbon wanted for the youngster, but Mendes revealed that it was too much to part with due to the construction of the Emirates stadium.
“There was a moment in which I really thought he was going to Arsenal. David Dein is a spectacular person but, with the construction of their stadium, they were left with very little money and it wasn’t possible,” Mendes is quoted as writing in his book by The Telegraph.
The Telegraph added that Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger confirmed missing out on Ronaldo was the most disappointing moment of his career, and it is easy to understand why given his spectacular achievements in the game.
After missing out on a move to the Gunners, Ronaldo joined the Red Devils and spent the ensuing six seasons winning many trophies and rising to the very top, including clinching the Ballon d’Or in 2008.
Since his Old Trafford exploits, the 29-year-old has somehow taken his game to a whole new level at Real Madrid, breaking numerous goal scoring records and creating history.
This season alone, he has scored 28 La Liga goals in just 17 starts – more goals than the combined total of 11 Premier League teams thus far.