Fikayo Tomori admitted to the Telegraph that Frank Lampard had said he could join West Ham United in the summer after initially blocking the move away from Chelsea.
Tomori had been excluded by the Blue’s former manager.
Exiting out of Stamford Bridge’s back door was the only viable possibility for both parties.
He eventually ended him signing for AC Milan on loan in January with an option to buy him permanently for £25m (Telegraph).
Things could have been very different had West Ham got their way.
Sky Sports reported the Hammers were close to hammering down his signature but the deal fell through last minute.
The 23-year-old explained the confusing situation that had left him in transfer turmoil.
“I was ready to go and I wasn’t allowed to because the manager said I was in his plans,” he said.
“Then, a few hours before the deadline, I got a call saying the manager had said I could go to West Ham and it was a shock because this hadn’t been in the conversation at all.
“I like to think I’m pretty logical and I think things through and, together with my dad and my agent, my plan had been that if Everton didn’t happen, I had to be prepared to stay at Chelsea.
“By the time the West Ham offer came, it was too late to just switch that mentality with no time to think about it.”
Everton were another Premier League side to show interest in Chelsea’s young defender.
Carlo Ancelotti had identified him as early as September and were close to finalising a contract, according to Sky Sports.
Leeds United also lined Tomori up as a potential signing (Metro).
None of the English names managed to finalise a transaction.
This was left instead to their Italian counterparts. Milan managed to secure Tomori, with both player and club benefiting from the move.