Villarreal midfielder Robert Pires has hailed his former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger as "unique".

Pires said: "I had the luck to work with Wenger, who is the ideal trainer for a soccer player, because he lets you do what you want on the pitch, to express what you have inside you.

"He signs you, he gives all his confidence to you and lets you play.

"Arsene's style is unique: simple, fast soccer, looking for the goal in a constant way. Nobody is like Wenger. He is unique!"

Pires also revealed he almost signed for Real Madrid before joining Arsenal.

"I spoke with the people of Real Madrid. But as soon as Wenger appeared, I had no doubts."