Djibril Sidibe has explained why he chose Monaco over Arsenal as his destination during the summer transfer window.
Arsene Wenger had made the 24-year-old defender a top priority when the transfer market opened, but the full back chose to go to Monaco instead. Arsenal had made a bid of 15 million pounds back in July, according to reports from L’Equipe.
In an interview with France Football, Sidibe said,” I hesitated a lot. But knew my playing time would be limited at Arsenal”.
Wenger, who is still on the lookout for defensive reinforcements, is said to have been a big fan of the defender. As of now, injuries in pre-season to Per Mertersacker and Gabriel Paulista have weakened Arsenal’s defense. So, ironically, had Sidibe been signed, he would have been a regular for the time being.
But, like in many cases, negotiations broke down with Sidibe’s former club Lille and he was snapped up by AS Monaco.
Sidibe caught the eye of big teams during his four year stint with Lille, where he made 96 appearances and scored 7 goals, and has experience playing in the champions league. He is a versatile player, who is mainly a full back, but can also be deployed in the midfield.
Given his youth and his imposing and agile presence on field, he makes an excellent addition to any team.
Given Arsenal’s problems every season with respect to injuries to players, Sidibe would likely have played a major role in defence for the team had he signed. But being the fourth choice defender after starting regularly for Lille may not have been enticing. The move to Monaco makes more sense for the player, while the Gunners certainly missed out on an experienced defender that they could certainly use right now.