Arsene Wenger has claimed he turned down numerous offers from both Real Madrid and the England national team, during his tenure as Arsenal boss.
The Frenchman stepped down from his position at the helm of the club this summer after a 22-year spell and is set to be replaced soon, with ex-PSG boss Unai Emery all but confirmed as his successor.
It is still unclear what comes next for Wenger, who leaves the Emirates Stadium as one of the most experienced coaches in the game.
While his next step is unknown, it’s hardly any secret that he was wanted by some of Europe’s best clubs at different points in his career. However, he remained steadfast, a decision that was helped by financial constraints after the club’s Emirates move.
“When we built the stadium the banks asked me to commit for five years, the first time [I turned them down] was inside the five years and I thought no I could not do that, that would betray my club,” he said to beIN Sports (via Standard Sport).
“Real Madrid I think I turned down two or three times you know. It’s one of the teams I loved when I was a kid. I just felt that it was a very sensitive period for Arsenal Football Club.
“You are always tempted to go to Real Madrid because they offered me the chance to take control of the whole club.
“At the end of the day, I said no once, twice. I turned so many clubs down you could believe it. At the end of the day, I was happy where I was as well.”
Wenger also reveals having turned down the England job, yet the FA’s interest in him was hardly kept under wraps.
“I turned them [England] down two or three times,” he added. “But at that time the daily involvement for me was important.”
Apparently keen to remain active as a manager, Wenger is likely to take up a project away from the Premier League, especially as he’s said he would hate to ever go up against his former club in the future.