Bordeaux president attacks Wenger over pursuit of Chamakh

Click to follow
The Independent Football

The Bordeaux president, Jean-Louis Triaud, yesterday criticised Arsène Wenger's pursuit of Marouane Chamakh, saying that the Arsenal manager's behaviour had not been "correct", that he had unsettled the player and that he had subsequently decided not to pursue his interest.

The Morocco striker was linked with a move to Arsenal over the summer and, indeed, the Gunners had a bid turned down. Wenger then recently hinted he might make another offer in the winter transfer window.

However, even though Chamakh will be out of contract next summer, Triaud insists he would be wasting his time. "What I do not like in the behaviour of Arsène Wenger, who is doing this again, is that at the beginning he declared his interest in Chamakh, a long time before calling me," he said. "Then he ended up doing so.

"And now, Mr Wenger is starting again, again starting to put doubt in the mind of the player. And I don't find that very correct. That said, in January Marouane will not leave. Even less so on a free transfer."

West Ham and Sunderland were also interested in Chamakh, but Bordeaux always claimed they would only allow the 25-year-old to move to a club they believed were better than them.

Arsenal fitted the bill but Triaud believes Wenger was never as interested in Chamakh as he made out.

The Bordeaux chief added: "I said I wanted around €18m [£16.2m] for the transfer, because in a negotiation I know very well that there is always a counter offer.

"He said that was a lot, and called me 48 hours later, as agreed. He offered seven. I replied that was too low and he suggested calling me back a little later to find a compromise, but in the end he never called back.

"In fact, I think Wenger made me an offer low enough so that I would refuse it, knowing that he had also made one to the player and that moreover he was waiting to see what would happen in his squad. Seeing Eduardo make a fantastic start to the season, Wenger suddenly realised he no longer needed Chamakh. So there was no more news from London."

Triaud added: "At that point Chamakh asked me to block everything for Arsenal and I told him no, and called Wenger to know [what was happening].

"He told me he didn't want him any more, stating that he is a great player, that he respects him, but if he takes him and he does not play, it would not be right for the player or for the club.

"He said that, regardless of the price of the transfer, he was not interested. Thank you and goodbye!

"That's how it happened, something I explained to Chamakh, so he has no bitterness towards the club."