Mathieu Debuchy feels as though he has wasted six months at Arsenal after being told by Arsene Wenger in the summer that he would have chances.
Debuchy is set to leave Arsenal this month, with Aston Villa among the clubs interested, but the France right-back is frustrated that he was persuaded to stay in the summer.
Asked by L’Equipe if he regretted not leaving earlier, Debuchy said: “Yes, clearly I have lost six months.
“I would have preferred to have left last summer, but the coach told me I would have my chance. It was not the case.
“I don’t know who is responsible. Last year, I was injured and I was out a long time and Bellerin played well.
“This summer, I had a good pre-season and I was ready to begin the season as a starter, but the coach decided otherwise. That is competition, no problem. That is football.”
Debuchy, 30, also revealed that he has spoken to Villa boss Remi Garde over the phone as he considers his next move.
“They are among the teams who want me,” Debuchy said of Villa’s interest. “I am looking at everything, but it is not an option I have ruled out. It could be a great challenge.
“Even if they are currently in trouble, Aston Villa are one of the big English clubs. I also had the coach on the phone.
“The conversation went well. Whatever happens, even if it is to come back here in the summer and leave again, I have to leave this winter. I cannot stay at Arsenal.”