Arsenal News: Gael Clichy Turned Down Liverpool, Roma For Man City
Manchester City defender Gael Clichy admits he turned down the advances of big clubs like Liverpool and Roma to move to Eastlands, because he believed in City’s ambition and vision for the future. Clichy made the switch to City sometime last week from Arsenal for a fee believed to be in the region of 7 million pounds.
Talking about Liverpool, he stated that the talks had reached an advanced stage, and Director of Football Damien Comolli had been with him on the phone to cajole him to move. He also confessed to there being serious contact from Roma with an interesting project on hand, but he chose City above them as he wanted to stay in the Premier League.
Speaking to L’Equipe, Clichy said-
“With Liverpool, contacts were very serious. I had Damien Comolli, the sports director, on the phone, I have known him for a long time,”
“There was also interest from Roma, with a great project and an interesting offer, but I wanted to stay in the Premier League.
“I like the football here and the mentality. And City offered me the possibility to play in the Champions League.”
Many have accused him of making the switch for money and increased wages, but Clichy reiterated that he was only looking at ambition and the potential to win trophies while he made the decision to move.
“I would have earned the same amount at Liverpool. I am a defender, I am not scoring 30 goals per season. Defenders’ wages don’t evolve so much, although there are some exceptions with [Rio] Ferdinand and [John] Terry.
“I get that people think that money was a decisive element. It is not the case. Manchester City are a big club with a big squad. It is an ambitious club which wants to shine in each competition.”
Clichy also confirmed that he left Arsenal on good terms and that spoke positively about the Gunners’ chances to win a trophy next season. But he personally felt that City were better suited to battle it out for silverware and underlined the severity of Arsenal’s late season collapse following the Carling Cup final defeat against Birmingham.
“I have nothing against Arsenal. I am not angry against Arsene Wenger, but I have been here for eight years – I felt it was the moment to leave Arsenal and that Manchester City were the good club.
“I don’t know if City will win something and maybe Arsenal will win a trophy next year. At the end of my career, what stays is the record of achievements.
“I think City is better fitted for that. [Arsenal] were in every competition until March, and then, after the loss of the Carling Cup against Birmingham, everything collapsed. City’s offer arrived quite late but I did not think too much.”