I am not sure if it came as too much of a surprise to Bacary Sagna that some of the Arsenal fans took his decision not to sign a new contract with the Gunners. The fact that he also decided to move to one of our biggest Premier League rivals, Man City, must have made him think of the recent sagas with the likes of Samir Nasri and Robin van Persie, but maybe not.
Because the France international seems to have been taken aback by being accused of greed by some Gooners. And when you read what he says in an interview with John Cross of The Mirror, it appears that the Frenchman has a good point. Sagna reminds us that, although his contract with his new club represents a huge jump in his weekly wages to £150,000, he stuck with the Gunners for seven seasons on much less money than he could have got elsewhere, with no trophy to show for it until the FA cup win at Wembley last season.
Sagna said, “First of all, I want to clear something up. I keep reading many things about me, about my salary and me being greedy. But I’m not.
“I stayed six or seven years with the same salary at Arsenal. It’s clearly not for the money. Personally, I just wanted a change.
“I wanted a boost in my career and I think it was the right time to do it. It was a difficult thing to do, very difficult. For me, Arsenal is my family, it’s home. It’s the club that made me grow as a player and as a man so it was not easy at all.
“But I will say it one more time – I just needed a change.”
We should remember how quickly Ashley Cole abandoned the club and the manager who developed him, when his wage demands were not met. Then you have players like Nasri and Fabregas who made it very difficult for the Gunners not to sell them, for whatever reasons.
So I think Sagna is right to be upset about the accusations of being a mercenary that have come from a seemingly small section of Arsenal fans. I still think he should have stayed with us, because Pablo Zabaleta will make it very hard for him to get a game, but I cannot condemn him for his decision. Can you?