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Last Updated: Sunday, 15 October 2006, 10:32 GMT 11:32 UK
Ribery agent makes Arsenal claim
Franck Ribery
Ribery made his international breakthrough at the World Cup
Arsenal boss Arsene Wenger wants to bring French World Cup star Franck Ribery to the Emirates Stadium, according to the winger's agent.

Ribery, 23, was linked with a 10m move to the Gunners in the summer but stayed at Marseille.

His agent Bruno Heidersheid told the News of the World: "Wenger likes Ribery a lot. He wanted to take him this summer but Marseille refused to sell.

"Arsene has made it clear he wants to take him next year."

Ribery moved to Marseille from Metz last summer and still has four years left on his contract.

Heiderscheid insists the France international is keen to join up with Wenger in the Premiership.

However, he has not yet had any official contact with the club.

"Franck would very much like to join Arsenal because of Arsene, the style of football they play and because his very close friend from the France team, Thierry Henry, plays for them," said Heiderscheid.

"I can categorically deny there is any agreement with Arsenal at this stage or even negotiations.

"These would have to take place in January at the earliest as we see how the season progresses with Marseille.

"Franck is now a very big player in Europe and it's true the biggest clubs want him badly."

Ribery was handed his international debut just before the World Cup and impressed with his pace and flair on the flank.

He is expected to take the role of the retired Zinedine Zidane for Les Bleus.



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