Frederic Piquionne has confirmed interest in his services from Arsenal and Newcastle during the January transfer window.
The French striker was a reported target of a host of sides last month after falling out with St Etienne.
Piquionne finally joined Monaco on loan, but not before Arsenal and Newcastle had both shown a keen interest.
"I had the opportunity to leave for England, either Newcastle or Arsenal," Piquionne told France Football.
"My agents contacted Arsenal officials. They talked to St Etienne, who couldn't agree.
"(St Etienne) wanted to loan me out for six months and have a firm option to buy at the end of the season with immediate financial guarantees.
"The English sides didn't agree.
"By then it was near the end of the transfer window, we had to find a solution, it was Monaco or Lens."
Meanwhile, Piquionne has apologised for comments made in January claiming he was a 'slave' for St Etienne.
The striker's remarks came after St Etienne refused to sell him to rivals Lyon.
"I am sorry. I apologise for using the word slave a few weeks ago in the media," Piquionne added to RMC.
"I apologise to the person who took the word slave the wrong way.
"I am not that crazy. I just wanted to say that I shouldn't be the hostage of a club."