Robinho: Chelsea blew their chance to sign me

Robinho has revealed Chelsea blew the chance to sign him before his dramatic deadline day transfer from Real Madrid to Manchester City. The West Londoners looked to have secured the unsettled Brazilian, but City – whose owner is revealed in today’s Rich List as the wealthiest person in British football – splashed out £32.5 million to bring the diminutive No.10 to Eastlands from the Bernabeu. In the new issue of FourFourTwo, released today, the former Real Madrid player speaks candidly about Chelsea’s presumptuous behaviour, which led to the deal’s collapse. “It was Chelsea’s fault,” insists Robinho in an exclusive interview. “Real Madrid didn’t want me to go there, but Chelsea didn’t help themselves. “Everything would have gone ahead but they put that picture of me on the website [in a Chelsea kit before a fee had been agreed] and Madrid were very upset,” said the 24-year-old. “They then said that I could leave, but not to a team who would rival in the Champions League. Manchester City weren’t a threat to Real Madrid.” Robinho, who has set the Premier League alight with 11 goals in 15 games, left Real Madrid in controversy after he publicly criticised the club for mistreating him. The fleet-footed forward joined Madrid from Santos for in 2005 and scored 25 goals in 101 appearances. After falling out of favour with the then Real Madrid manager Fabio Capello, Robinho returned to the side to play a key role in the club winning their 13th La Liga title in 2007. But seven goals and 14 assists last season weren’t enough to keep him at the Bernabeu and after a breakdown in relations he spoke out in the press, paving the way for a move to the Premier League. However, the Brazilian international has no regrets about his acrimonious departure. “I’m far happier here than I was in the final months at Madrid. People should realise I want to be here for many years to come.” Robinho dismisses claims he joined City for the money and maintains he is excited by the challenge. “If I only wanted money, I would have gone somewhere else. I had offers from Saudi Arabia and Japan, I could have earned more. “I remember Chelsea – three or four years ago they were considered a small club but now they are a big club. So anything is possible,” he said.

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For more, see FourFourTwo magazine, out now. If quoting, credit FourFourTwo magazine and link to this story.

The new issue of the magazine also includes exclusive interviews with Dimitar Berbatov, Russell Brand and Woking boss Phil Gilchrist, among many others.

INTERVIEW: Q&A with Robinho, Mar 2008 BLOG: La Liga Loca's Super Spot The Difference, Sep 2008 BLOG: La Liga Loca – Robinho on the edge, Aug 2008

CITY FANS! Check FourFourTwo.com’s ever-expanding interviews archive for more stuff to read: One on One Sven Goran Eriksson Web Exclusives Joe Corrigan Q&A Robinho Boy's A Bit Special Michael Johnson Ask A Silly Question Peter Reid, Alan Ball What Happened Next? Jim Whitley, Tony Cunningham Sing When You’re Winning David Threlfall

Plus! Joe Corrigan on Weekend Wonders and City on Talentspotter

CHELSEA FANS! Check FourFourTwo.com’s ever-expanding interviews archive for more stuff to read: One on One Gianfranco Zola, Nicolas Anelka Boy's A Bit Special Michael Mancienne, Scott Sinclair Perfect XI Ruud Gullit, Marcel Desailly Sing When You’re Winning Vidal Sassoon

Plus! Ruud Gullit on Weekend Wonders and Chelsea on Talentspotter