Manchester City midfielder Samir Nasri has told FourFourTwo he has kept in contact with former manager Arsene Wenger despite his acrimonious departure from Arsenal in 2011.
Nasri followed Emmanuel Adebayor and Gael Clichy to the Etihad Stadium for £25 million four years ago, with Wenger later revealing how the Frenchman – and others – had “destroyed” his plans for a bright future in north London.
But the French pair still talk, says Nasri, who revealed his respect for the man who plucked him from Olympique de Marseille aged 21 in 2008.
“Yes, I speak to him,” the now-27-year-old told FourFourTwo. “I’m close to Arsene Wenger, I’ve always said he is my football father, and I wouldn’t just say that.
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I’m close to Arsene Wenger, I’ve always said he is my football father, and I wouldn’t just say that
“He did a lot for me; he made me the player I am and is someone who’s been really important for my career. So I have a good relationship with him, he is someone I will always respect because he deserves it. For me, he’s been the best manager I ever had in my career, so I have a lot of respect for him.”
Nasri has played under Manuel Pellegrini at the Etihad Stadium since the latter’s arrival in summer 2013, and won his second Premier League title under the Chilean’s stewardship. The Frenchman says his current boss shares many characteristics of Wenger’s – and isn’t afraid to express himself.
“Football wise it’s the same – they like to have a team with good professionalism, and an offensive team as well,” said Nasri. “So they have the same mentality, and they are both calm as well.
With Pellegrini, you know exactly what he thinks about you
“The thing is with Pellegrini, you know exactly what he thinks about you. He passes you his message when he’s disappointed, and that’s really important in the relationship with a manager to talk about things, as you know exactly what he wants from you.”
Interview: Sam Rowe.
Samir Nasri wears the New Balance Football Visaro range, a boot designed for players who ‘Make Chances’. To find out more about New Balance Football go to newbalance.com/football or follow @NBFootball on Twitter and Instagram.comments