In the end, it appears to have been a no-brainer for Mathieu Flamini when it came to choosing between staying at Arsenal and moving to Milan. Sky Sports report that loyalty went out of the window when the Italians came calling for the French midfielder, despite Arsene Wenger’s best efforts to keep hold of the 24-year-old.
Is the Arsenal manager a victim of his own success? He has an unbelievable knack of signing players who are relatively unknown and moulding them into world-class talents. Nevertheless, Flamini’s move to the San Siro clearly represents a backward step for the Gunners in their attempt to crack the current Manchester United – Chelsea stranglehold at the top of the league.
Milan sporting director Ariedo Braida revealed Milan coach Carlo Ancelotti is a great admirer of the 24-year-old.
“I have to say Flamini was a player that Ancelotti really wanted and Milan is like a family, where decisions are made jointly,” he said.
“Flamini is not an unknown player. Just like Didier Drogba isn’t.
“I’m not surprised by his talent and I assume several teams would have wanted his services.
“Although no negotiations are ever easy, it wasn’t difficult to convince Flamini to join Milan.
“Flamini has made a choice as his contract with Arsenal is coming to an end and we are delighted he has chosen Milan.
“He is a very good player and he can offer a lot to the team.”
Flamini expressed his joy at the move after finalising terms with the San Siro outfit.
“I am extremely happy. Thanks a million,” he said.
It will be interesting to see if Flamini plays Arsenal’s final game of the season at Sunderland or instead starts packing his bags for the fashion capital of Europe. Similarly, Arsene Wenger will be drawing up a shortlist of potential replacements, especially with Gilberto Silva and Alexander Hleb also likely to leave at the end of the season.