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Youri Tielemans chose Monaco over Arsenal this summer because the Ligue 1 champions could offer more first team football, the midfielder has revealed.
Belgium’s rising star Tielemans left Anderlecht in the transfer window and was courted by a number of major European clubs.
However, the 20-year-old chose Monaco rather than the Gunners because, with the Champions League semi-finalists having sold a number of key players, they could give him more chances.
He told Het Laatste Nieuws: ‘Monaco was just the best step for me. I knew that I could secure a place in the midfield because the vice-president had entrusted me with what he was planning.
‘Could I have gone to the Premier League? Yes, but Monaco was the first and most concrete team.
‘I knew there was not much going on with Arsenal’s interest. The board wanted to keep the players they had together to finish higher in the Premier League.
‘You must also be honest. When you see the midfielders that are playing at Arsenal, those are top footballers. I knew I would not get a lot of playing opportunities there. That’s why I didn’t think about it anymore.
‘I’ve never said no to a club. What I did do was immediately make clear where I wanted to go.’
Tielemans has played seven times this season for Monaco since joining in a £22.5m deal, scoring in their Champions League group stage opener against RB Leipzig.