David Villa reveals how close he came to signing for Arsenal

David Villa claims he felt 90% sure that he would sign for Arsenal and Arsene Wenger.

David Villa has revealed that he came very close to joining Arsenal in 2013 after growing fed up with the limited chances he was being offered at Camp Nou.

The Spaniard developed a reputation as one of the game’s best scorers when he turned out for Barcelona.

He formed a deadly strike partnership with Lionel Messi that helped Barcelona win two La Liga titles and the Champions League.

He, however, fell down the pecking order in his final season at Camp Nou and he sought a new challenge.

He attracted the attention of several top sides, but he came very close to joining Arsenal and he claimed that at some point he believed that the transfer was up to 90% done.

However, Atletico Madrid offered him their proposal before he could complete the move to Arsenal and he joined them instead.

He told BBC Sport: “We were in a lot of meetings and a lot of calls.

“I felt 90% in that moment that I [would] go to Arsenal and Arsene Wenger.

“But at that moment we didn’t arrive at the deal, Atletico Madrid arrived and in three or four days fixed everything.

“I don’t know what would have happened if I’d signed for Arsenal. I’m very happy that I signed for Atletico Madrid, not just for winning the league but for everything. I’m very happy to have made that choice.”

Arsenal was not the only English team who wanted the Spaniard with Liverpool and Chelsea also looking to sign him at the time.

1 Comment

  1. ken1945 says:

    This seems to be exactly the same scenario that AW recalled with regards to Gnarby – believing that both players were destined for the club, only for someting OR someone to interfere and not secure the signatures.

    I just wonder how much influence gazidis had on these and other “near yet so far” stories?

    I also recall Griezman complaining that he was left in limbo land, after being chased by the club and talking directly to Wenger, who, he claims, told him he was wanted by the club – only to be left dangling and vowing never to play for our club, when no further contact was made.
    Really hoping Wenger will address these kind of issues in his book – in my opinion gazidis did such untold damage and let other loyal people shoulder the blame.

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