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Pascal Chimbonda Claims Wigan Transfer Request Cost Him Huge Move



Pascal Chimbonda has claimed his infamous transfer request at Wigan Athletic denied him a surprise move to Manchester United, with the right back eventually moving to Spurs instead.

The former Wigan defender went from hero to villain in Lancashire pretty quickly. He helped Paul Jewell's side avoid relegation in their first Premier League season in the 2005/06 season, with his performances earning him a place in the PFA Team of the Year.

However things quickly turned sour and after the loss to Arsenal on the last day of the season he famously handed in a written transfer request in the dressing room, whilst still in his kit, something the 41-year-old claims cost him a move to Old Trafford, with United rumoured at the time to be interested in him.

"That's my biggest regret. That changed a lot of things," Chimbonda said of the incident to The Athletic.

"If I didn't do what I did then maybe I would have joined Manchester United. But when I made this mistake, I threw my chance away. Man United didn't want to sign someone who would do this."

The full back added that he regretted the incident instantly, saying, "Wigan were so mad. They didn't say anything to me. At the end of the game I gave a written letter to the manager in the dressing room, and he opened it in front of everyone. I wasn't even showered yet.

"The chairman was there too and I thought 'what have I done?' What a stupid thing to do. We were supposed to meet on the Monday, but I was told the manager doesn't want to see you. Just go on holiday.

"That's my big regret. If I could go back in time, I wouldn't do this."

The France international, who made just one appearance for the national team, didn't get his move to United but instead moved to White Hart Lane to play for Spurs.

His £4.5 million came on transfer deadline day on August 31st 2005 and ironically made his debut against Sir Alex Ferguson's team in a 1-0 loss.

He did taste success in north London though, helping Juande Ramos' side win the League Cup in 2008, starting in the win against Chelsea in the final.

Chimbonda nearly didn't make the final though, "I didn't expect to play that game because the day before my knee was so swollen.

"The manager told me I wouldn't play the game. But when I woke up at the hotel on the day of the final, the knee was fine and the swelling had gone down. I knocked on his door in the morning and said, 'I'm ready, I can play the game'.

"So he told me to do a sprint in the corridor. So I sprinted in the corridor, and I felt nothing."

Things could have been a lot different for Chimbonda, Spurs and even United if it wasn't for the ill advised moment he decided to hand in his transfer request, still dressed in his kit.

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