Former Newcastle striker Lomana LuaLua has turned down the chance to join Hartlepool.
Pools boss Mick Wadsworth has a close friendship with the DR Congo international having worked with him at Colchester and Newcastle.
And the experienced manager tried to persuade the 30-year-old to return to the North East after becoming a free agent following his release by Cypriot side Omonia Nicosia.
But LuaLua, who has been playing abroad since leaving Portsmouth for Olympiacos in 2007, is still hopeful of securing a deal on the continent and is thought to be mulling over a number of offers.
"I've spoken to Lomana a lot and I definitely tried to sign him," Wadsworth told the Sunderland Echo.
"We were all excited by it, but we knew it was difficult.
"We discussed it and it would have been a fantastic signing, but he's not ready to come back here to England just yet.
"He's enjoying playing in Europe. He's had a great career and has got a few years left in him yet."
Wadsworth has already pulled off one transfer coup this summer by signing another ex-Newcastle player, the former Peru international Nolberto Solano.