West Ham’s superb victory over City last weekend was due in major part due to the impact of one ex-Gunner, Alexandre Song.
He has duly recieved praise for his commanding role, including from Gooners, some of whom have even urged Arsene Wenger to make a move to bring him back to the Emirates.
The 26 year old appears to be leveraging on this recent publicity to attract more attention to his choice of West Ham as his destination for his loan deal, describing his decision to move to a different part of London other than Arsenal as “a very good choice”.
Song left Arsenal for Barcelona in 2012 after negotiations stalled over the renewal of a new deal with the club but has been on the fringes of the Barcelona team through Tito Villanova to Tata Martino. Though with a League winners medal, Song’s reputation as one of the strongest defensive midfielders at his time at Arsenal has somewhat withered, perhaps prompting him to make the move back to England to save his career.
Arsene made about £15m from the Song deal two years ago and though we have an obvious need of a midfielder of his capabilities, it wasn’t always feasible that Wenger would seek to recall Song, especially with the distasteful rumours that began to crop up about his lack of commitment to training during the final weeks of his stay. Song still had three years on his deal at the time but was holding out for a new arrangement for 5 years. He claims he got “fobbed off” by the club’s hesitations.
“I had been trying for eight months to start talking about a new long-term deal but the club kept postponing me all the time, saying ‘You have three years left'” he said.
“I hadn’t talked about money – I just wanted to sit down and discuss a new deal. I wanted to commit my career to the club I loved.”
It could well be, then, that Song would still have moved to the Emirates this season, even if on loan, had Wenger made an approach for him. He’s confessed his deep respect for Wenger, acknowledging the immense impression he had on his career.
“I have the utmost respect for Arsene Wenger, I loved him like a father and he is a fantastic coach” Song said.
“He made me the player I am and I am indebted to him for that. There was never any trouble between us”
This bears some semblance to the Fabregas’ situation where Wenger passed up the chance to sign a player who would have improved our team, though Song is of considerably less quality. Perhaps he’s trying to raise Wenger’s awareness as to the fact that he’s only on loan at West Ham and could still be available at the end of the season. Wenger, on his part, may be looking to move on from to new songs as he is wont to do with players who depart, setting his sights on fresh blood of the ilk of Schneiderlin, Carvalho, Bender and Romulo.
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