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Wenger Rues Missing Out On Real Madrid Ace

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has praised Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane and admits he’s disappointed the Frenchman isn’t playing under him at the Emirates.

Despite the transfer window now being closed there will still be plenty of gossip doing the rounds in the newspapers, so we’ll keep you up-to-date with the latest transfer rumours. Today, Arsene Wenger praises Raphael Varane.


Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has taken time out to praise young Real Madrid defender Raphael Varane and admitted he’s disappointed the Frenchman isn’t playing under him at the Emirates.

As Real Madrid prepare to face Premier League leaders Manchester United at the Bernabeu tonight in the Champions League, Wenger previewed the match in his column for EuroSport. As well as giving his thoughts on the game and the possibility of Jose Mourinho replacing Sir Alex Ferguson in the Old Trafford hot-seat, the boss gave special praise to Madrid’s Varane.

Wenger claims it’s ‘remarkable’ that such a young defender is making a career at a club like Real Madrid but wonders why the talented Frenchman managed to slip through Arsenal’s net. The boss said:

A quick word on my fellow Frenchman Raphael Varane, the 19-year-old Real Madrid defender who could face United. I’m happy for him because he’s carving out a role at one of the world’s best clubs, which is remarkable.

Yet at the same time, when you are in charge of a club like Arsenal, you have to wonder why this player is not playing for us. He was at Lens, and we might well have caught him there.

It was a risk for Real Madrid to sign him at his age, but when you have such a talent, you can overcome everything.

He has benefited from suspension to Sergio Ramos and injury to Pepe, but nevertheless Mourinho has chosen him to step in.

His next challenge is to manage the increased media exposure on him, especially now he is in the French national side.

Varane moved to Real in 2011 from Lens and has made 34 appearances for the first team so far. The 19-year-old has broken into the first team recently due to injuries and suspensions, but has taken his chance well and has been hugely impressive at the heart of Mourinho’s defence.

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He certainly looks to be a superb talent and you just hope he continues to be given a chance to shine at the Bernabeu. Ramos has been a mainstay in the Madrid starting eleven for years and is unlikely to be dropped any time soon so his main competition is likely to come from Pepe – who I feel is vastly overrated  – so I’d like to see Varane given a chance ahead of the Portuguese international. If not, I’d welcome him with open arms in north London!

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