Arsenal were priced out of Hazard transfer, admits Wenger

Arsene Wenger wanted to sign Eden Hazard from Lille before he moved to Chelsea, but the manager has admitted the Gunners could not afford the price tag on the Belgium international, according to the Daily Telegraph.

The manager’s revelation comes as the club announces profits for the last financial year of more than £36m – Chelsea paid only slightly less than that amount, £32m, to sign Hazard this summer. Wenger added that Hazard’s price was determined by a clause in his contract and that while he is prepared to spend large sums on players, he feels there are some clubs with which Arsenal cannot compete financially – and those clubs were also interested in Hazard.

Wenger said: “Let’s not forget that all the big budgets in England were after him. We are not scared to spend the money, but we feel that even if we spend our money, with some clubs we can’t compete on certain players.

Hazard has made a flying start to his Premier League career, playing five matches and creating four goals, as well as scoring once himself and picking up two man of the match awards. He also notched an assist in the Champions League against Juventus as Chelsea began the defence of their trophy with a 2-2 draw against the Italian champions.

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