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Arsenal hero Pires: Mum upset when I turned down Real Madrid

Arsenal hero Robert Pires has recalled choosing the Gunners ahead of Real Madrid and Juventus.

Pires admits even with his family's Spanish background he still chose Arsenal.

He recalled to AS: "It was a difficult moment, I felt that I was privileged, because I was choosing between Real, Juventus and Arsenal. I almost signed a contract with Real, but Arsene Wenger called me a bunch of times, picked my brains, and, in the end, convinced me to make a choice in favour of his team.

"My family really didn't like that I gave up on Real Madrid. My mother is from Spain, from Oviedo.

"When I called her and said that I was going to Arsenal and not to Real, she said: 'You are crazy! You do not know English! With such qualities you must go to Spain'.

"Everyone said that Real was not refused, but I refused."

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Paul Vegas

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