Sam Allardyce admits talking with Arsene Wenger over Yann M’Vila

Sam Allardyce Press Conference 12/02/2014

The midfielder has been a key man for Sunderland this season and was once a transfer target for Arsenal.

Sam Allardyce spoke with Arsene Wenger about midfielder Yann M’Vila earlier in the season, he has told the Shields Gazette. 

The French midfielder signed on loan in the summer, with the Black Cats taking something of a gamble on the player given the form he had shown in Russia.

Instead he has been a big hit at the Stadium of Light, thriving in the centre of midfield and looking likely to be a key player in their fight against relegation this season.

And Allardyce has admitted he talked to Wenger about the midfielder when he replaced Dick Advocaat earlier in the season.

“I spoke with Arsene Wenger and he said he’d bid a huge amount of money for him five or six years ago when he was at Rennes,” he told the Shields Gazette.

“In between that, something must have happened to him. But he’s resurrected himself here. Obviously we’ve helped, but you can only resurrect somebody if they want to do it themselves.

“If he can produce more big performances for us and start assisting the front lads more with goals, it would give us a great boost in getting out of this situation.”

While Allardyce says he is looking for M’Vila to provide more assists in the final part of the season, it is surely shoring things up at the other end that is most concerning.

They have one of the worst defensive records in the division so far, one of the major reasons they currently find themselves in a relegation dogfight.

If M’Vila could help improve that in some way between now and the end of the season, that would likely be a bigger help to their survival hopes than a couple of assists.

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