Stoke manager Tony Pulis has revealed he tried to sign Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain before the teenager joined Arsenal for an initial £12m in August.
Pulis told BBC Radio Stoke that the 18-year-old winger was a name high on his list of summer transfer targets.
"We were well aware of the situation, but when you've got Manchester United, Arsenal and the likes chasing him, you understand where you are," said Pulis.
Stoke, currently seventh in the Premier League, travel to Arsenal on Sunday.
Oxlade-Chamberlain, the son of former Stoke City and England winger Mark Chamberlain, has played just 28 minutes of Premier League football for Arsenal since signing from Southampton.
However, he scored on his first start for the club against Shrewsbury in the Carling Cup and then became the youngest Englishman ever to score a goal in the Champions League against Olympiakos on 28 September.
Oxlade-Chamberlain has also won five caps for the England Under-21 side, scoring a hat-trick in the recent 3-0 win in Iceland, and could be a contender to be named in Fabio Capello's 23-man squad for Euro 2012.
"The kid is a future England star and I think he could even go to Euro 2012 if he plays enough games, he's that good," added Pulis.
Before their trip to the Emirates Stadium, Stoke take on Maccabi Tel-Aviv of Israel in the Europa League on Thursday.
The Potters are top of the group with four points from two matches, but Pulis believes the Israeli side, who are currently bottom of Group E, should not be underestimated.
"I've enjoyed the European experience and I think the players have as well," said the Stoke boss.
"They're a really good side, they're a very silky team with some very good players and they move the ball around ever so quickly. Again, it's a massive test for us."
BBC Radio Stoke will have full-match commentary of Stoke City against Maccabi Tel-Aviv from 1900 BST on Thursday, 20 October.