Shakhtar Donetsk midfielder Fred has told ESPN Brasil that he did have interest from Manchester City, and could still join Pep Guardiola's men in the summer.
Fred, 25, emerged as a top young talent in his native Brazil with Internacional before heading to Shakhtar in 2013, trying his luck in Ukraine.
The likes of Elano, Jadson, Willian, Luiz Adriano, Fernandinho, Ilsinho, Alex Teixeira and Douglas Costa have all excelled with Shakhtar over recent years, and Fred can now be added to that list.
The central midfielder – formerly a left back – has starred in the heart of the Shakhtar midfield, and he has been heavily linked with a move to the Premier League as a result.
In January, the Daily Mail reported that Manchester City were pursuing a £50million deal for Fred, with manager Pep Guardiola viewing him as a future successor to Fernandinho.
City seemingly teed up a deal for Fred by sending striker Olarenwaju Kayode to Shakhtar on loan earlier this month, and Guardiola may still be pursuing a deal.
Now, Fred has told ESPN Brasil that interest from City did exist in January, and still exists to this day as they attempt to lure him to the Etihad Stadium this summer.
Fred added that he is also interested in joining Manchester United, Chelsea or Arsenal, and believes that he will develop and improve if he gets his desired move to the Premier League at the end of the season.
“It existed, yes, and it still exists,” said Fred. “There was a process now in the winter window, and they even made a proposal for Shakhtar, but it didn't happen because of the Champions League, since I could not play for another team. But there was, yes (a proposal). Guardiola did not talk to me, but there were people from City who talked to my manager. Unfortunately it did not work, but now I'm focused here, out of the window we try to forget and focus on football. In the middle of the year, we wait to see what will happen.”
“Of course yes (I'd like to play in the Premier League). I would evolve. City is a great team, I would be happy to play there ... or at Manchester United as well, at Chelsea, Arsenal, clubs of great tradition in Europe and England. It is the best league in the world, I have no doubt, and I believe that my football would evolve,” he added.