Former Arsenal captain and current Crystal Palace boss Patrick Vieira has made a surprise admission about a proposed Tottenham transfer.
The Frenchman signed for the Gunners in 1996 and left in 2005 a club icon. Vieira captained Arsenal for much of his tenure in North London in a period of sustained success under Arsene Wenger.
But at age 29, Vieira was surprisingly moved on when agreeing to join Juventus in 2005. His stay in Turin would be short-lived. A lengthier stint at Inter Milan followed before rounding out his career at Man City.
Vieira was past his best when turning out for the Cityzens. That helped to soften the blow Arsenal fans received when seeing him in another English club’s colours.
However, the current Eagles boss – who again tormented Arsenal’s rivals Tottenham with a 3-0 victory on Saturday – has surprisingly admitted he held talks over a switch to Tottenham at the back end of his career.
Vieira admitted to having a conversation with then Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp over a move.
“It is too far and a long time ago. I don’t remember,” joked Vieira (via the Mirror), before adding: “No, that was a period where I really wanted to come back to the Premier League.
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“Knowing Harry quite well and admiring him as a manager, we had a conversation about different options.
“But at the end there was no chance of me coming to England and going to Spurs, no chance.”
Two trophy winners emerge on Arsenal managerial shortlist
Meanwhile, Arsenal are understood to be casting their net far and wide as they look at potential alternatives to Mikel Arteta.
The Gunners’ poor start to the season – which has been buoyed by Saturday’s 1-0 win over Norwich – has led to speculation that Arteta could be on borrowed time at The Emirates.
TEAMtalk revealed on Friday that Brighton boss Graham Potter and Brentford chief Thomas Frank have emerged as potential head coaching candidates for Arsenal. Arteta is firm favourite in the Premier League sack race to be first out of the door.
But now, speaking on the Transfer Window Podcast, Ian McGarry says Arsenal are looking at Christophe Galtier and Brendan Rodgers as possible options.
A swoop for Rodgers would not require an explanation given the superb job he has done at the King Power. He has turned the Foxes into a team capable of sustained top four challenges. Additionally, he also oversaw their the club’s first ever FA Cup victory last season.
Galtier, 55, meanwhile, could also be a difficult man to lure having just taken over at Nice. He guided Lille to their first Ligue 1 title in 10 years. However, he then resigned in the summer with his “time up”.