Back in the summer of 2009, after five years on the books at Anfield, a talented midfielder made it clear that he would like a switch to north London
Xabi Alonso was “begging” for a move to Arsenal when exit doors opened at Liverpool, claims Cesc Fabregas, but the Gunners ignored the Spaniard’s pleas and he headed off to Real Madrid instead.
Back in the summer of 2009, after five years at Anfield, a talented midfielder was ready for a new challenge.
He had taken in 210 appearances for the Reds, claiming a Champions League crown along the way, and was widely considered to be one of the classiest playmakers in world football.
Arsene Wenger regularly stocked his ranks in north London with creative influences, however, the Frenchman was to pass up the chance to acquire the services of a player who would go on to become a World Cup winner during his time at Santiago Bernabeu.
That decision did not go down well with fellow countryman Fabregas, who had been hoping to see another Spain international drafted in alongside him.
“I was on the phone with Xabi the whole summer, he was dying to come, he was literally begging everyone to go to Arsenal,” Fabregas told Arsecast.
“He really wanted to come, I did my best – I spoke to who I had to speak, I gave my opinion, I thought that he was a fantastic addition for us at that time.
“A couple of times like that I was frustrated at the lack of push, that it’s so close – the player is dying to come, it’s so easy to make this deal.
“I’m not a director, I see it from a player’s point of view. When I see it as a player wants to go somewhere it’s easy, normally it should happen and Xabi Alonso was one of them.
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“I remember I was talking to him the whole holiday, he was texting me saying ‘What’s happening?’, it was a shame because I think he would have been a great addition to that team. He was made for Arsenal I think.”
Wenger brought in just one player during the summer window of 2009, with Belgium international defender Thomas Vermaelen snapped up from Ajax.
The Gunners would go on to finish the following Premier League season in third spot, while crashing out of the Champions League at the quarter-final stage.