Wenger dismisses Barca protests over Toral

Updated: 25 February 2011 21:02 IST

Arsene Wenger has dismissed Barcelona's protests that Arsenal made an immoral signing when they raided the Spanish club's academy for wonderkid Jon Miquel Toral Harper.

Wenger dismisses Barca protests over Toral

London Conley:

Arsene Wenger has dismissed Barcelona's protests that Arsenal made an immoral signing when they raided the Spanish club's academy for wonderkid Jon Miquel Toral Harper.

Barca president Sandro Rosell is furious that Arsenal persuaded 16-year-old Toral to move to the Emirates Stadium in a deal that echoed Cesc Fabregas's move from the Nou Camp to north London as a teenager.

Toral, who has an English mother, was free to sign for any professional club after learning his trade at Barca's La Masia academy but Rosell claimed Arsenal's actions were "a little bit immoral".

The highly-rated youngster will officially join Arsenal, who face Barca in the Champions League last 16 second leg next month, at the start of next season and Wenger is adamant his club did nothing wrong.

"You forget the boy is English. He has an English passport, his mother is from Darlington and we hope he will join us in the summer," Wenger told reporters on Friday.

"We have done what is legal. I love Catalonia. I have nothing against them (Barcelona) but if a player who is English wants to join us, why should we say no?

"Providing it is legal, it is fine. If it is not legal I say, 'Sorry my boy, we can't do it.'"

"Plenty of players leave us in the same way. If you look at the Barcelona academy and you see where all the players come from, then you come back to me."

Topics : Football Arsenal Barcelona Jon Toral
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