Talking Football: The consensus in French football is that not one significant dual-nationality player who has been selected to play for France has turned them down
Aston Villa 3 Blackburn Rovers 1: Frenchman inspires young team-mates after sending-off to deny Blackburn
Aston Villa manager Gerard Houllier admits he made a mistake in playing veteran midfielder Robert Pires immediately after his short-term move to the midlands club.
Arsene Wenger has known Gérard Houllier since both men started their careers in the French championship 28 years ago, but the Arsenal manager confessed this week to being surprised that today he will once again sit in the opposite dugout to his old friend.
Gerard Houllier, the Aston Villa manager, has confirmed his interest in Real Madrid striker Karim Benzema. Houllier admitted "we would sign him tomorrow" if Benzema becomes available.
Robert Pires is due to sign for Aston Villa later this week. The move, which will be a return to English football for Pires four years after he left Arsenal, was confirmed yesterday by Villa's assistant manager, Gary McAllister.
Aston Villa today confirmed that former Arsenal and France midfielder Robert Pires will join the club later this week.
Arsenal winger Samir Nasri maintains players in the Barclays Premier League are not "evil", but feels referees should do more to protect players.
World Cup Lives
Leicester City have made "serious enquiries" about signing Robert Pires, according to the former World Cup-winning winger. The 36-year-old is a free agent after being released by Spanish side Villarreal and is reported as saying he is keen to return to England having played for Arsenal between 2000 and 2006.
The England winger is seen by some as an unfulfilled talent, but he is causing panic in the Catalan ranks
Spanish midfielder attacks Benitez on eve of key Europa League tie for beleaguered Liverpool
Arsenal 3 Celtic 1 (Arsenal win 5-1 on aggregate)
Barcelona 2 Recreativo Huelva 0
Arsenal will be without striker Robin van Persie for Tuesday's Champions League quarter-final first leg trip to Villarreal with a groin injury.
Villarreal will face Arsenal tomorrow night still reeling from their worst 90 minutes of the season and the loss of one of their best players – Spain international winger Santi Cazorla, whose fractured fibula rules him out for the rest of the season. In need of a straightforward three points, sealed early enough in the game to allow him to take off his most important players, coach Manuel Pellegrini looked on in horror as Cazorla was carried off and Robert Pires sent off.