Former Burnley star Besart Berisha has revealed he could have ended up joining Manchester United or Liverpool before making the move to the Clarets.
The 17-times capped Albania star moved to Turf Moor in the summer of 2007, with injury preventing him from making an appearance during his time in East Lancashire.
Berisha, who is still only 31 and plundering the goals in for Australian A-League side Melbourne Victory, admits things could have been very different.
Berisha lined up for his nation Albania against England “B” in a friendly at Turf Moor. Although the Three Lions eased past the Albanians 3-1, it was Berisha who stole the show, with the then 21-year-old’s performance the talk of the media after the game.
A blond Berisha powered through the English defence from deep and smashed a strike against the bar as a warning sign, before beating Scott Carson in the England goal after another driving run into the box.
The A-League goal machine looked every inch the power striker any EPL club would want, with Ledley King and his fellow defenders unable to contain him.
And sure enough, Berisha’s agent’s phone ran hot after the match. “I played against England, an unbelievable game. I was in the top [form] and good shape.
“Really I remember all the Premier League clubs look at me but Burnley signed me quick,” Berisha told the A-League’s official website.
“But I heard other clubs were interested too. My manager told me something about Manchester United and Liverpool were also interested.
“I remember, I was on top [at the time]. I was playing for Hamburg at the time and super strong.
“But I signed with Burnley on a three-year deal because the captain [Steven Caldwell] wanted me and I liked the stadium [Turf Moor].
“It was great for me and I liked the special supporters at Burnley. I loved it.”