Former Barcelona midfielder Alex Song has revealed he knew he would not play first-team football for the club but he signed because “I would be a millionaire.”
The Cameroon international joined the Catalan giants from Arsenal in the summer of 2012 for a transfer fee reported to be £15m.
Song has clocked up 215 appearances across six years at the Gunners and had become an increasingly prominent player for Arsene Wenger’s team in a deep-lying midfield role.
He penned a five-year contract at the Camp Nou and while he made 65 appearances for the Blaugrana, it was condensed into two seasons and he joined West Ham in the summer of 2014.
Song subsequently had brief stints at Rubin Kazan in Russia and Swiss side Sion, but he had his contract terminated last year after refusing to lower his salary.
Now aged 32, Song is a free agent and reflected back at his time at the Blaugrana where he won the league title in 2012-13 campaign.
“When Barcelona offered me a contract and I saw how much I would earn, I did not think twice,” Song said on Instagram Live, as cited by Diario Sport. “I felt that my wife and children should have a comfortable life once I retire.
“I met the sporting director and he told me that I would not play many games, but I did not mind, I knew I would be a millionaire now.
“Most footballers live beyond their means. I was at Arsenal for eight years, but I only started earning a living in the last four, when I realized what a waste it was.
“I was going into training and I saw Thierry Henry appear with a real jewel of a car. I told myself that I wanted the same car at all costs. I went to the dealership and bought the same one. But I swear I had to return it within two months, all my money was going to gasoline.”
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