Legendary Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger, who retired from coaching in 2018, has revealed in an interview with BeIn Sports that he rejected Real Madrid “two or three times”, and in the interview, also stated his reasons for saying “no” to Real.
“Real Madrid tried to sign me two or three times and Barcelona also tried to sign me on one occasion,” Wenger said. “I was involved in a project to build the new stadium that replaced Highbury and it had to be financed. We paid for it all ourselves, we did not receive help from anyone. We paid for it on the field and by selling to the most expensive players and signing cheap. That’s why I didn’t go to Madrid, I wanted to finish that project.
“I rejected some of the best teams in Europe and today I am quite proud of it. Because I showed commitment, loyalty and that you can go to the end of a project. I didn’t look for immediate glory, I went for something deeper. In this life you can only do what you think is right. It’s my character, I don’t know if I chose well, but I did what I wanted.”
Wenger, who was a Real Madrid fan growing up because he loved watching the legendary team with Kopa, Puskas, Gento, and di Stefano, says that sometimes he wonders if he made the right decision.
“Nowadays I sometimes think about whether or not I really did the right thing by rejecting Real Madrid,” Wenger explained. “But at that time I felt like I was in an ideal club,”
In an alternate universe, Arsene Wenger was appointed as Real Madrid's manager in 2003 to coach the Galacticos pic.twitter.com/amAGxv5bZN— Managing Madrid (@managingmadrid) November 2, 2023