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Petit: I turned down Man Utd for Chelsea

Arsenal legend Emmanuel Petit admits he turned down the chance to sign Manchester United while playing for Barcelona.

Petit wrote in the Daily Mail: "I then had the opportunity to sign for Manchester United because Sir Alex Ferguson came to see me play twice at Barcelona, and I had the chance to play alongside Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs, David Beckham and Roy Keane but I decided to have a new challenge so I signed for Chelsea.

"At that time Roman Abramovich wasn't there and Ken Bates wanted to sell the club. They did not have much money to spend in the transfer market. Despite all of that, we had a quality squad and tried to compete but we did not have enough talent especially on the bench. That is why we could fight for only six months of the season.

"It was a transition period because everyone knew at the time that Bates was desperate to sell. The opportunity came with Abramovich and that is why the club went into another dimension. With that sort of financial power you can do whatever you want now in football so that is why the club has changed so much.

"I don't regret my three years at Chelsea. The only thing I regret is my final year when I had two big operations and I had to stop playing football."

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