The Indianpost

Samir Nasri has a swipe at Arsenal fans after City deal

Samir Nasri concluded his £24m move to Manchester City declaring that he had joined “the club of the future” before making a reference toArsenal’s supporters that will only increase the sense of acrimony surrounding the transfer.

Nasri, who has signed a four-year contract, admitted he had become “frustrated” at Arsenal and said he is looking forward to playing at a stadium with a better atmosphere than the Emirates.

“The City supporters are really passionate and it reminds me of [playing for] Marseille,” Nasri said. “Arsenal have good fans but they are not that passionate since they moved from Highbury to the Emirates. The crowd at City are amazing and that’s what you want as a player – a good atmosphere.”

Nasri has roughly doubled his wages and the 24-year-old, in contention to make his debut in Sunday’s game at Tottenham Hotspur, said it was “a big relief” to have finalised all the drawn-out negotiations.

“In France they are already calling Manchester City ‘Galácticos‘ like they did with Real Madrid when they had [Zinedine) Zidane,” he said. “It was a long, long negotiation between the two clubs but I’m a City player now and that’s what I wanted from the start.”

Nasri, their fifth and almost certainly final summer signing, was targeted after Barcelona had beaten them to the signature of Alexis Sánchez from Udinese, but Roberto Mancini’s interest in the France international dates back to when he was manager of Internazionale five years ago and the player was still in France.

“He’s a fantastic player,” the City manager said. “I knew of him when he was at Marseille but in the last few years, playing in the Premier League, he has improved a lot. He has technique, mentality … he’s similar to David Silva, but the difference is he [Nasri] can play in the middle, too. He’s young, he can score goals, make assists – it’s fantastic for the club.”

Nasri received a welcome phone call from the chairman, Khaldoon Al Mubarak, after arriving at Eastlands, and the player revealed he had spoken at length over the summer with Patrick Vieira, the former Arsenal captain now working as City’s football development executive.

“He made a big difference because he’s a legend in France. Everyone loves him and respects him and when a player like that is telling you Manchester City is the place to be because they are the club of the future, that they want to win everything and have a big project, you have to listen.”

The admission of what, in effect, appears to be tapping-up from Vieira is unlikely to ease the bad feeling that has been left behind at Arsenal at the end of a summer-long saga that began with Arsène Wenger declaring the player would not be sold.

“I was a little frustrated because I’d told the manager I wanted to leave and I wanted to do the whole pre-season with Manchester and get to know my team-mates,” Nasri continued. “I was a bit frustrated but today is a big day for me.

It’s a new start and I’m looking forward to it. Even the weather was nice when I arrived. I don’t see the difference from London and I am here to play football, to enjoy it and win the title.”

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