Silvestre seeks France return
Gunners new boy eyes national call-up
By Patrick Haond. Last Updated: August 22, 2008 2:51pm
Silvestre: Eyeing France call
New Arsenal signing Mikael Silvestre has set his sights on re-establishing himself in the France national side.
Silvestre joined the Gunners on Wednesday in a surprise move from Manchester United.
Injuries have severely disrupted the 31-year-old's previous two seasons, and he has not featured for his country since 2006.
However, in the hope of gaining regular first-team opportunities at Emirates Stadium, Silvestre is keen to break back into Raymond Domenech's France squad.
"Getting back into the France team? I am keeping faith," he told L'Equipe. "I hope to play at the 2010 World Cup."
"When you are at a competitive club like Manchester United or Arsenal you have to aspire to play in the national team."
On his transfer to Arsenal, Silvestre said: "I first spoke with [manager] Arsene Wenger on Tuesday. I had talks with Bordeaux, but the financial side of things did not work out.
"I also had contact with PSG several weeks ago. But now I am at Arsenal and the fans know I can bring something to the team."
Wenger added on the club's official website: "They (United) let him go and we took him.
"I felt Manchester United had made up their mind to let him go before we were interested, to maybe Manchester City or to France, so it was not necessarily us going in there and buying a player.
"Mikael can play centre-back, he can also play left-back and that is an area where we were a bit inexperienced. He has a great team attitude and he can help us in the dressing room as well with his maturity."