Arsenal latest: Wenger missed out on Chelsea star but could land Bayern playmaker

All the latest news, views and transfer rumours from the Emirates Stadium...

With Arsenal's place in the Champions League now secured, manager Arsene Wenger will not only be focusing on landing the club's first trophy in nine years in the FA Cup final against Hull City, but also the summer transfer window where the club will be expected to strengthen heavily.

Yet today Wenger revealed how close the club came to landing Chelsea star Eden Hazard back in 2012. The Belgian was plying his trade with French side Lille then, and Wenger confirmed that the Gunners almost landed Hazard - only for money to prevent the move.

“Yes, I wanted to take him, I had his agent at my home but again the barrier was financial and Chelsea made an effort that I couldn’t make,” Wenger said. “He can be one of the players who grows into the [Lionel] Messi, [Cristiano] Ronaldo stature if he continues to develop well.”

Wenger will be hoping for better this summer though, and has been linked with a blockbuster swoop for Bayern Munich playmaker Mario Gotze. The former Borussia Dortmund starlet has been in and out of the Bayern side this summer, and with a strong German contingent already at the Emirates Stadium with Mesut Ozil, Lukas Podolski and Per Mertesacker, Gotze could join them this summer.

Meanwhile, one of the current Gunners stars is on the verge of a comeback, with Abou Diaby finally poised to make his return to the Arsenal first team after a lengthy absence. The Frenchman has seen his career dogged by injuries, and revealed today that he even considered retiring after so many setbacks.

"It was the longest absence of my career. You ask yourself questions. You ask yourself if you are still a football player," said Diaby. "You think of abandoning it all. I said to myself, 'I've had enough. I stop here. I've had enough of treatment and rehab'. I spoke about it with my parents, brothers, sisters and my friends. Then I woke up one morning and said, 'No, it's out of the question'. I quickly saw sense."



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