Guardian, Wednesday, August 20, 2008 12:30 PM
Manchester United's long-serving defender Mikaël Silvestre, 31, is reportedly moving to Arsenal, becoming the first player to move from Old Trafford to the north London side for 34 years.
Brian Kidd was the last player to head south from United to Arsenal, back in 1974. Arsenal coach Arsène Wenger set up the Silvestre deal after learning that the player had been holding
talks with Manchester City and Sunderland. Silvestre had provisionally agreed a move to City but then backed out, apologizing to the Manchester club because he wanted the opportunity to work for
Wenger, live in London and be involved in the Champions League. Wenger apparently sees him as a first-choice central defender.
United boss Alex Ferguson rarely sells players to his
rivals. Our view is that Silvestre is an exciting full-back who is dangerous on the flanks going forward, but who is defensively vulnerable and prone to errors when under pressure. Perhaps the wily
Scot can foresee that Silvestre's place in the Asrsenal defense could be to United's advantage.
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