According to West Ham manager Slaven Bilić, AC Milan striker Carlos Bacca rejected a move to the Hammers earlier this summer as he was waiting for a potential move to Arsenal.

In an interview with Milan News on Friday, Bilić spoke about the transfer market as well as several attacking targets they were interested in signing – most of which failed to materialise.

Alexandre Lacazette (Lyon) and Bacca remained at their respective clubs whilst Michy Batshuayi joined Chelsea and they eventually signed Simone Zaza on a season-long loan deal with a permanent fee inserted into the temporary contract.

In September last year they were interested in Zaza – but Juventus were not willing to sell at the time. Afterwards, they had eyes on Bacca.

MILAN, ITALY - AUGUST 21: Carlos Bacca of AC Milan celebrates his second goal during the Serie A match between AC Milan and FC Torino at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on August 21, 2016 in Milan, Italy.
MILAN, ITALY – AUGUST 21: Carlos Bacca of AC Milan celebrates his second goal during the Serie A match between AC Milan and FC Torino at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on August 21, 2016 in Milan, Italy.

Bilić was quoted as saying the following“But we weren’t the first choice of the Colombian. He was waiting for Arsenal or Atletico Madrid and then finally decided to stay at Milan, but we are very happy because we bought Zaza, who an year ago was our first choice.”

Bacca made public his desire to join a side competing in the UEFA Champions League and with 20 goals (all competitions) last term, it’s clear to see his knack for goalscoring has continued as he’s settled into another European league this past campaign.

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With that being said, at 30-years-old he’s reaching the peak of his powers and Lucas Perez’s versatility may well have been one of the deciding factors in his switch to the Emirates.