Friday, October 7, 2022

Wenger reveals how close Arsenal came to signing Kylian Mbappe

Arsene Wenger says he met with striking hotshot Kylian Mbappe at his home last year as he looked to take advantage of the fact the Monaco man’s contract was coming to an end.

The Arsenal manager has been quite vocal in his admiration of the 18 year old, speaking more than once about how he was a player the club had been watching very closely.

Just how close wasn’t know until now, however, with Wenger saying, “The player would tell you that I was at his home last year to try to get him here.

“He was at the end of his contract but Monaco managed to keep him and the decision was very, very tight.

“I could understand it as well because he was educated there and at the end decided to stay there.”

As for a deal being done in the future, Wenger didn’t sound especially hopeful.

“Can Arsenal get him? I don’t know, that’s down to him,” he said.

“You know certainly as I do that today he will decide where he goes and say: Real Madrid? Maybe. Barcelona? Maybe. Arsenal? Manchester? He can go where he wants.

“So I don’t know what is his deep aspirations but maybe the best thing for him is to stay one more year at Monaco.”

If Monaco have anything to do with it, he’ll be going nowhere, with vice-president Vadim Vasilyev saying, “Mbappe has no price. He is like a son.

“We would like him to stay and I think he also wants that.”

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These stories hurt – we’ve been close on so many of these big names. I mean wasn’t it the same for Yaya Toura, Zlatan and a host of other stars?


I’m really sick of these stories and honestly don’t understand why Wenger keeps bringing them up – it’s basically celebrating failure.


Spot on

Who gives a fuck who we nearly signed. I’m sick of the loser PR bollocks Wenger & the club have been trotting out for years now.


This reminds of that time I watched the 24m lotto draw and then told everyone that I knew what numbers were gonna get drawn out and I was very close but then I didn’t do it and I didn’t win.


Sad really almost there is not there


That was basically my point. What good does it do him to highlight his transfer failures???


This makes absolutely no difference, Wenger would have had him play his sterile pass,pass,pass till the opposition get back and catch us on the counter tactics, and he would just look like another sanogoals. Its not the players, its the manager and everyone above him. The players fall into Wengers way of playing and then they start to look average and can’t even do the simple things. Our build up play is so slow and predictable, we used to be a very dynamic team that passed with a purpose but not anymore, we look clueless with the ball and absolutely… Read more »


He’s probably lost the concept of failure.

Almost signing Mbappe is basically finishing second.

That has passed for “success” for over a decade.


You do realize he was asked? He wasn’t going around telling everyone at the grocer’s he almost signed him.

The Loon Ranger

Reminds me of some sad bloke in a pub Beyonce? Could’ve had her. Kylie? Falling all over me she was


Pisses me of more after watching him last night, what an immense talent.


Exactly , it is just embarrassing to keep hearing this. I don’t understand why he keeps bringing the up , maybe he is just desperately searching for silver linings in already fuked up season .


That’s just nonsense. He was asked the question as part of an interview, and as with all his interviews he answered the question as opposed to dodging it or walking out as some managers have done. He doesn’t bring these things up , he answers questions put to him. Give the man a break….


Same way he’s been asked many-times-over about his future and he stays mute.

Cyprus The Immortal Gooner

It’s pretty simple…he covers his a** by telling us fans, that his intentions were to strengthen the team and that it’s not easy to get the big players the fans want. But that’s not the only problem unfortunately. What you do with the current set of players?


He’s been celebrating failure for almost a decade, let’s be honest.

Mississippi Gunner

For me the most painful stories are the players we just didn’t really seem to go for that were right in front of us, we could have competed for if not signed, and went on to be great additions to the club they signed for. Khedira, Dybala, Draxler, Cesc. Griezmann is French, why didn’t we go after him when he was leaving Sociedad?Those are the major ones. Missing out on established players that we need is far more criminal than missing out on young, future superstars. But yeah I still wish he would shut up about players he almost signed.… Read more »


Don’t forget Alonso and Suarez when he was in Holland. All players that were within budget and just needed a strong decision to be made on them. we seem to dither on all the decent young talent like Dybala and end up buying the one no one wants for good reason. If we didn’t have the money we should at least be doing the Monaco model and bringing in super talented young players. That USED to be us. Seems so long ago now…

Mate Kiddleton

I think when we had the chance to go for Hazard, and he chose Gervinho for a smidgin less… that pretty much sums it up.


I was a naive kid when the hazard to arsenal rumours were going on, and having seen him play and all the hype around him, along with arsenes statements (of this nature), I was 100% certain he would join arsenal…..


Higuian was a big miss.


Different stories. Wenger turned down Yaya and Zlatan. He took too long on C Ronaldo, Griezmann, and a host of others. What could have been.

Me So Hornsey

Wow. He was at his house last year. There was a time when if you were a young French player and Arsene Wenger came calling, the deal was as good as done. It was a no-brainer for the player. Not any more. And sadly, I think that fact is the one of the most telling aspects of the latter part of his reign.

Heavenly Chapecoense

This is due to money though.


I am sure if we pressed it we could have brought him in last summer if we offered him enough. Treated him like our version of a young Rooney and just snatch the best talent at a young age, no matter the price.
I am sure he isn’t on Theo’s wage yet, you could definitely twist my arm for a like for like swap ;p

I know Rooney is shit now but when he was 18 he was dynamite.


That’s simply not true. We pay top wages, the problem is we do for mediocre players. Remember when we couldn’t shift Bendtner or Almunia because they were on 70,000 a week? Same goes for Jenkinson and Debuchy.


Just fucking stop will ya.


Wenger almost convinced him to use Arsenal as a springboard to his future sale to Barcelona!


Wenger couldn’t close the deal, says a lot about how far he has fallen.

Lloyd Townsend

Yet he closed the deal on Özil, Sánchez and Xhaka, who were all established players. I feel it’s not fair to pick out a single deal and proclaim it shows something when there is other evidence to the contrary.


Seriously Xhaka looks very average to me, i dont know what the hype is about him. He is a blogs favorite though.


These stories / quotes from Wenger infuriate me. Arsene would have a built 2 – 3 formidable invinciblesque teams filled with a bunch of what coulda-beens. The fault falling somewhere between his penny-pinching and the boards refusal to splash the cash I know they have. Funny and partly scary thing is we’re not playing (or winning) anywhere close to what the Arsenal did back in the day to make the next generation of stars fall in love with the club. Are we living in past glory or nah?

a different George

You may be infuriated about others, but it is pretty clear that money was not the reason that the then 17 year old Mbappe decided to stay at Monaco, nor Arsenal’s failure to win the league.


We’re second rate everything we do or don’t do is underwhelming.
He’d be mental to choose us TBH.
We’re told time and again that we can’t/won’t compete at a certain level.
As long as Kroenke’s turning profits he’s as happy as a pig in shit.


Just like an A-level or a degree that you didn’t quite get. What’s the point of talking about it?


Fantastic. So now we’re emulating the N17 marsh dwellers – ” we nearly signed him, him and him”.
Great. And when he’s banging them in for Real next year we’ll all feel a warm rosy glow. That makes my impending season ticket fee so much easier to hand over,


Enough already

Chavs had him on trial at 14 so you are hardly ahead of the others


I like him, but honestly I’d preffer if we had a Mbappe coming out of our youth ranks.
Donyell Malen anyone?


Supporting Arsenal has become so boring. If the quality of the football doesn’t get to you, Arsene’s cut and paste interviews certainly will. This is what it feels like to be Bill Murray. “OK campers, rise and shine – and don’t forget your booties ’cause it’s cold our there today”.


^^^ so true that we should put a ‘Ned’ outside the ground to lump in the face on matchday 🙁

California Gooner

Wenger couldn’t close the deal. Is anyone surprised by this?

a different George

According to the Guardian, Monaco has rejected a £72 million bid from Man United for Mbappe; they want at least £100 million. Make of that what you will.


I find these recent comments infuriating. “Ask Suarez, he will tell you we agreed terms; talk to Mbappe, he will say he was at my house; we scouted Deli Alli many times; we tried to sign Kante”

It’s presumably supposed to show he’s still got an eye for a player, but in reality it shows he just can’t deliver anymore.

Eric Blair

Could we make a ‘Nearly Signed By Wenger XI’?

Yaya Toure and Kante in midfield, Cristiano Ronaldo and Eden Hazard on the wing, Mata at ’10’, Suarez up front? Any others? Defenders and Goalies? Maybe Cech before going to Chelsea.


btw, you should probably acknowledge the source for these quotes, assuming it wasn’t a personal interview


Fake News.


For somebody who doesn’t like talking about ‘yesterday’, I’m tired of listening to what could have been


More nearly nearly stories. I’ve heard enough Monsieur.


Why does Arsene insist on repeatedly making these comments? All they do is make him and the negotiators seem incompetent.

Faisal Narrage

Mbappe is part of a new generation who have grown up during the latter and less successful period of Wenger’s reign. He isn’t as influential and they aren’t as beholden to him as before when France was barely plundered for players outside of Wenger’s contacts.

Basically they don’t need Wenger anymore to establish themselves, and it seems some of these guys are more willing to go to places like Dortmund for their development.

Lord H

Fucking yaaaaaaaaawn heard all this bollox too often


“I remember a young 16yr old Messi coming up to me and wanting to join Arsenal on a 15 year contract for £5k a year, I offered him £1 and a chomp bar so he joined Barca”

It was so close, you see I can spot a player


It’s not like that these great player that wenger missed out would be as great as they are if wenger managed to signed them.

Winterburn 87

Cheer up Gooners, he signed Sanogo???


Get out while you can Kylian!


Clearly he was asked a question and he gave an answer. I dont see how this gets peoples nickers in a knot.
We arent privvy to Arsenals negotiation tactics.
The only thing we can take from this is that Arsenal have had offers on table for many players who have rejected the terms.
The problem is likely more to do with the way the club sticks to its wage structure and wont bend even for the most talented players. If a deal is on the table and the player goes elsewhere its most likely a $$$ thing.

An Ox-sized Coq

When he eventually writes his autobiography, it’s going to be riddled with “almost didn’t sign the contract extension” excerpts.


You have no idea how close Wenger was to banging Cindy Crawford back in the day too.


Wenger doesnt help himself at times with these quotes of i nearly signed him and him and him, well you never…i do wonder if henry/vieira/anelka ect were playing in this day and age woukd they come to arsenal? Surely the answer would have to be no as were worlds apart now from what we were then as wenger himself is a shadow of his former self. I actually find myself agreeing with Mbappe’s decision here as an Arsenal fan, which is quite a sobering thought.


Wonder no more.

Not a fucking chance in hell would any of them come to Arsenal.

Damn, Ian Wright said as much over the weekend. He was asked if he would choose to go to Arsenal or Tottenhem if he were a 19 year old hotshot. He said it was unfair but admitted that Tottenham was the more appealing club right now.

The real question is whether players like Sagna or Rosicky would come to present day Arsenal.

I dread the answer.


Mbappe must really regret his decision to stay. Had he signed with Arsenal we would have loaned him out and he would probably be fighting for a starting spot in a relegation threated side in the dutch second tier.


Spot on! Just wanted to write that 🙂


I have been hearing these stories since eternity and now all I want to say about this is “LOL”.


Wenger seems to celebrate his own failures with these “revelations”, maybe unconsciouslu but he does. Must be age? A new younger manager is needed and very badly


I guess he thinks it’s some kind of badge that demnstrates his eye for talent. It seems that he thinks he gets points just for trying. He doesn’t really see that it is also a condemnation of his failure to convince those players to come to Arsenal.


This is the clearest analysis I have read why Wenger is failing all the time now. Too old, simples. Football gets more and more competitive. Keeping Status Quo is going backwards.


I really don’t get the purpose of Wenger always telling the public how close we were of signing this and that new superstar. Doesn’t it just highlights the incompetence of the club so spot real talent at act on it?


is anyone else fed up with him nearly signing players

Wright on the money

If Wenger stays next time he speaks to someone or sees someone he needs to sign them not tell us about years after how close we were.


True. It reminds me of the film the film The Damned United, when Brian Clough and Peter Taylor drove all the way to London to sign Steve Mackay and Brian says to Taylor: «You would have come all the way and not sign him.»

Laughing Stock of Football

This is vintage Wenger: reframing failure as success. “Hey everybody we may have failed to sign this great player because he’s not an idiot but at least I recognised how good he is. Aren’t you all lucky to have me??!!”


I don’t think Wenger understands how these stories come across, they only underline our/his decline!


The club is in turmoil, stop with these stories ‘we nearly signed X’!


I nearly won the national lottery once. I went to the corner shop but he refused to sell me the ticket for 87p. Zzzzzzzzzzzz


AW: “I had a contract in front of me to sign for two more years. Did I hesitate…….”


Ha Ha, what a fucking joke, as if he would even consider joining this joke of a club, why would he?
If we had actually managed to sign half of the superstars we have allegedly have been close to signing over the years we would be re writing the record books and young talent like Mbappe and others would be begging to join us.


B-b-but Jarrow Roofing BCA are worse!

How dare you call this club a joke!

My local club, they don’t even have a real ball and their central defense is a literal cow.

You Arsenal fans are so impatient, turning on your manager after a short 13-year period of decline.

Our last manager, he’s been dead since 1923. We think it would be disrespectful to replace him so soon.


Ha, ha, ha, great read.


It’s almost like wenger is a sadomasochist who’s thinking “I know the fans are hurting right now, probably a good time to really kick them in the dick with this”

Public Elneny Number One

Arsene Wenger, the ultimate troller of Arsenal fans the world over

Ana Klein

As close as the 1 pound mark for Suarez?


i am not a wenger in but let’s be fair to him he was answering a question . may be he should lie. the fun thing is people will regret him cause with the board we have , you can bring any manager he wont be much more successfull. i guess people want change which is normal . there is nothing more constant than change. and its long overdue. but the wenger bashing is sad to witness.

Donald\'s Trump

I bet a better manager would be more successful. Everyone was praising this squad at the start of the season. There’s only one constant and it’s Wenger and he’s past it and has been for years.

I mean i am happy to win FA cups but no one really cares about them any more, teams play 2nd XIs and Wigan and Portsmouth can win it.


he encourages the journalists to ask him these questions !! no other manager goes around gloating about players he nearly signed !!!

Mark Scully

I’m so fed up of hearing about the world class players he could of signed.How about telling us about world class players he’s going to sign.For so long I have defended this man,but now I’m done he has to go he simply has to.

Dan P

Shut up you tedious cunt


At least he managed to attract other talents like sanogo,santos , gervinho , injured kalstrom, welbeck and this this non league LB

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