Toure reveals Arsenal snub

Barcelona midfielder Yaya Toure has revealed he came close to joining Arsenal instead of Olympiakos in 2005 - and still cannot understand why the Gunners opted out of a deal.

The 26-year-old spent just one season with the Greek champions before moving to Monaco - where he made 27 league appearances.

But since signing for Barcelona he has established himself as one of the finest defensive midfielders in Europe, helping Pep Guardiola's side seal an unprecedented treble in 2009 by lifting the La Liga, Copa del Rey and Champions League trophies.

Despite reported interest from Arsenal, Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United last summer, the Ivory Coast international stayed put in Spain.

However, it has not proved to be a wise decision, with Toure finding himself a regular onlooker from the substitutes' bench in 2009/10 - starting just 11 games in all competitions.

As a result, speculation has resurfaced regarding his future at the Camp Nou, with Arsenal and United still believed to be keen on securing his services, while City have since snared Patrick Vieira from Inter Milan.

And Toure has revealed that the Gunners' boss Arsene Wenger had considered teaming him up with younger brother Kolo in North London five years ago - and is still disappointed that the transfer did not come to fruition.

"I was disappointed and never understood why Wenger did not want to close the deal," he told Marca.

"But one day I would like to play in the Premier League."

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