Anelka claims top clubs are afraid to sign him

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The Independent Football

The former Liverpool striker Nicolas Anelka believes Fenerbahce do not provide the big stage he deserves - but fears other clubs are afraid to buy him because of his strong personality.

The 26-year-old forward, who was recently recalled to the French national team and has a chance of playing at this summer's World Cup in Germany, has once again spoken of his discontent at his current club.

Anelka said of the Turkish side: "It's not a big club - it's a good club but I have the impression that other clubs fear that my character could cause a problem."

There is good reason for that because Anelka has had stops in many cities during his controversial career. He talked about negative experiences at previous clubs, including a loan spell at Liverpool in 2002.

Anelka believed he was to be signed to a good contract at Anfield but ultimately was not. He accused the former Liverpool coach, Gérard Houllier, of going back on his word.

"I need stability," he said. "I thought I had found it at Liverpool [while on loan in 2002]. I loved everything at the club, the team-mates, the chairman, the town and the fans. God wanted it differently, however, it's a pity. Today, that's the sort of challenge I am looking for."

Taking aim at Houllier, then manager at Anfield, Anelka continued: "Gérard Houllier allowed me to believe that I deserved my place in that team 100 times.

"At the last moment - and I don't know why - he decided not to keep me. He did not keep his word which is typical of him."

Anelka has fonder memories of Arsenal's manager, Arsène Wenger, and believes it was only at Highbury that he was allowed to play to his strengths. He said: "It was easy, everyone played for me. I didn't have to only run and track back.

"Arsenal's game was fast and fluid - it played to my strengths. Since then I have not played at a team that was entirely at my service."

At Manchester City Anelka had problems. He said: "The team was not fantastic and I did not have very much good service. I felt I had to do everything - it became tiring."

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