AS says Valverde had “reached a verbal agreement" with Arsenal when he was still at Penarol.
Then manager Arsene Wenger's chief scout Francis Cagigao had watched the South American, and knowing how the Gunners needed to strengthen their midfield, recommended the ace.
In fact, Cagigao watched him several times and allegedly convinced the player, his family and his agent that a move to Arsenal was the best one for him.
This report also adds that Valverde and his agent actually flew to London in December 2014 to spend six days at Sopwell House Hotel, which is near Arsenal's Training Centre.
He trained with the first-team but the North London club decided to wait to table an offer.
And that proved to be a huge error as his mind was changed after he starred in the South American U17 Championship in Paraguay a couple of months later.
He scored seven goals at the tournament - with his exploits catching the eye of Real Madrid.
Arsenal had tabled an offer of £2.7million for the ace - but it was too little too late.