Lecce signing Fabrizio Miccoli has confirmed he was close to signing for Melbourne Victory before choosing his hometown club.
The 34-year-old striker left Palermo at the end of June and was heavily linked with a move to the A-League.
Reports suggested Miccoli had verbally agreed to join Victory and would be unveiled during the club's marquee friendly against Liverpool.
But the forward, who was born in the small town of Nardo, just 30 kilometres from Lecce, signed with the Serie B outfit on on July 15.
Despite that decision, Miccoli confirmed at his official unveiling with Lecce that he was close to joining Ange Postecoglou's team in Australia's top tier.
"This is a special and historic day for me," Miccoli told reporters.
"In terms of football this is the happiest day of my career. Finally my signature arrived which has been so long in coming.
"The question of level was never an issue, which I have shown with this decision.
"I want to thank the president and director of the club who have shown me affection. And I also want to thank my family who understood my decision. I am happy.
"I also want to thank Melbourne who until the last moment tried to persuade me to join them, focusing on Miccoli the footballer.
"Going there would have been great but it isn't Lecce. Thank you all for coming…Forza Lecce."
Miccoli left Palermo, relegated to Serie B last season, under a cloud after being linked with mafia figures and investigated for extortion.
It was expected the investigation and links would see him leave Italy before he decided to join Lecce.
Missing out on Miccoli marked the second time in the off-season Victory have failed to secure the services of a high-profile marquee after Greece international Giorgos Karagounis signed for Fulham, ending their chances of bringing the 36-year-old midfielder to Australia.
|Manchester City boss Guardiola rues absence of ´special´ Jesus|
|I don´t get tired of praising these players - Simeone revels in Atletico Madrid´s rampant form|
|I could have scored more goals! - Bayern legend Lahm reflects on remarkable career|
|Espanyol 0 Barcelona 3: Suarez brace, Rakitic strike sends Luis Enrique´s side to the top|
|Bayern players celebrate Bundesliga success|
|Dyche delight as ´outstanding´ Burnley finally win away|
|Ancelotti thanks Bayern Munich ´family´ after securing Bundesliga title|
|Championship Review: Brighton shocked, Wigan relegated, Redknapp works his magic|
|Short admits his role in Sunderland relegation|
|Crystal Palace 0 Burnley 2: Barnes and Gray seal long-awaited first away win|
|Las Palmas 0 Atletico Madrid 5: Gameiro strikes twice in resounding win|
|Wolfsburg 0 Bayern Munich 6: Ancelotti´s men clinch title in style|
|Hughes preaches patience with Berahino, Bilic forgives Calleri rabona|
|Silva lauds Jakupovic penalty save as vital moment in Hull´s bid for survival|
|Vardy urged to ´finish on a high´ after firing Leicester to brink of safety|
|Zidane hails Marcelo, Carvajal as two of world´s top full-backs|
|Monaco 3 Toulouse 1: PSG thrashing forgotten as Mbappe and Lemar seal spirited win|
|Dortmund get two days off ahead of huge Hoffenheim match|
|Madrid dug deep in our soul, says match-winner Marcelo|
|Moyes: It´s my worst day in football|
|WATCH: Subotic leads ´yellow wall´ chants after helping Cologne draw at Dortmund|
|Southampton 0 Hull City 0: Jakupovic´s last-gasp penalty save preserves vital point|
|Sunderland relegated after 10 years in Premier League|
|Real Madrid 2 Valencia 1: Marcelo the hero after Ronaldo misses penalty|
|Sunderland 0 Bournemouth 1: Late King goal confirms hosts´ relegation|
|Stoke City 0 West Ham 0: Butland secures point for Potters|
|West Brom 0 Leicester City 1: Vardy fires Foxes closer to safety|
|RB Leipzig 0 Ingolstadt 0: Stalemate leaves Bayern on the brink of glory|
|Borussia Dortmund 0 Cologne 0: Stoger brings BVB back to earth|
|Torino star Belotti unperturbed by excessive price tag|
|McClean received death threats over Republic of Ireland decision|
|Ben Arfa denied Nice return as Emery selects PSG´s ´best´|
|Pioli´s Inter ´family´ fighting to halt poor run|
|Rangers 1 Celtic 5: Champions rampant in Old Firm rout|
|Granada relegated after defeat to Real Sociedad|
|Montella demands end to AC Milan transfer rumours|
|Coleman has no fear over return from broken leg|
|Sydney FC 3 Perth Glory 0: Premiers into final with video assistance|
|Mangala clueless on long-term Manchester City future|
|Barcelona´s Iniesta out of Catalan derby due to injury|
|Unbowed Kompany retains Champions League ambition at Manchester City|
|Marotta confirms Juventus interest in Sampdoria striker Schick|
|Our family is complete – Liverpool great Gerrard announces birth of son|
|Dybala: I need more goals to be like Del Piero|
|Melo among four suspended after Penarol-Palmeiras brawl|
|Ferguson would never do it - Sheringham unhappy with Mourinho style|
|´Wenger Out´ protest casts unhelpful light on Arsenal´s trip to Spurs|
|PSG unhappy over €100,000 fine after damage at Lyon|
|Toronto FC 2 Houston Dynamo 0: Altidore at the double for in-form MLS hosts|
|Toure: Hopefully United attack more next season|
|Conte can´t guarantee Hazard stay as Madrid circle Chelsea star|
|Allegri: Juventus´ draw with Atalanta the perfect preparation for Monaco tie|
|Too much, too soon? - Lampard questions Guardiola´s demands at Man City|
|Atalanta 2 Juventus 2: Last-gasp Buffon error proves costly|
|Cardiff City 0 Newcastle United 2: Atsu and Hayden keep title dreams intact|
|Mbappe will go to Arsenal but Henry comparisons premature, says Gunners legend Pires|
|Koeman: Everton need more players with Lukaku´s mentality|
|Tuchel ushers Dortmund back to the well after Bayern triumph|
|Conte impressed by ´four or five´ of Chelsea´s FA Youth Cup winners|
|Pochettino sets Spurs sights higher than finishing above Arsenal|
|Tottenham to move to Wembley for 2017-18|
|Simeone not interested in Jese´s Griezmann jibe|
|Griezmann wouldn´t get in Real Madrid team, says Jese|
|Praise for Lukaku but Chelsea boss Conte happy with Costa|
|United ´miss belief´ but Mourinho gunning for top honours next season|
|Manchester derby draw changes nothing for Liverpool - Klopp|
|Ronaldo so good he could play anywhere - Zidane|
|Barcelona boss Luis Enrique expects Neymar to keep his cool|
|Rooney in midfield, Mourinho and Tuanzebe at centre-back - Manchester United boss assesses injury cr|
|Madrid rotation policy not unjust - Zidane|
|Ancelotti insists he has full support at Bayern|
|Iniesta misses training ahead of Espanyol v Barcelona derby|
|Sanchez trolled by Leicester defender Huth over throw-in controversy|
|Thiago determined to win Champions League after pledging future to Bayern|
|Sanchez throw-in reaction not embarrassing, insists Wenger|
|Lovren pens long-term deal at Liverpool|
|Arsenal scouted Alli before Tottenham move, claims Wenger|
|Thiago signs new Bayern Munich deal|
|Mourinho and I often speak, reveals Evra|
|Barcelona and Real Madrid would find Premier League tough, says Klopp|
|My heart is in Italy, says Chelsea boss Conte|
|Copa Libertadores Review: Barrios hat-trick ensures Gremio stay unbeaten, River preserve perfect rec|
|Ancelotti future not discussed – Rummenigge|
|Mourinho: City will finish in the top four|
|Sevilla boss Sampaoli to be offered Argentina job, confirms AFA|
|Kovacic content at Real Madrid – agent|
|Bilic hails reported West Ham target Sturridge|
|Ramos open to presidential role at Real Madrid|
|Guardiola laments City´s ageing full-backs|