France international Djibril Sidibe has admitted he was “very flattered” to hear of interest from Arsenal in the summer before moving to Monaco.
The 24-year-old left Lille for Monaco on a five-year deal but could have moved to the Premier League after it was revealed Arsenal had made a late bid for his services.
The defender has previously revealed that he opted to turn down a move to the Emirates because he was concerned he would not get enough playing time.
However, Sidibe, who has been named in Didier Deschamps’ France squad for their games against Ivory Coast and Sweden says he was thrilled to attract interest from Arsene Wenger’s men.
“I’d just had a big season with lots of goals. I’d been decisive a few times. Then there was the call up pre-Euros. I was somewhat expecting a few offers. They came. It’s true that Arsenal’s came at the last minute. I’d already decided on Monaco, but it was very flattering,” he told Foot Mercato.
“Today, Arsenal is one of the biggest teams in the world. As I’ve repeated many times, today I’m at Monaco. I’m happy and I know it was interpreted a certain way, but it’s part of the job.”
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Sidibe has enjoyed a bright start to life at Monaco with Leonardo Jardim’s side second in the table going into the international break, three points ahead of champions PSG.
Arsenal, meanwhile, brought in Shkrodran Mustafi over the summer who looks a very shrewd buy indeed after establishing a fine relationship with Laurent Koscielny at the heart of the Gunners’ defence.