Alex Song admits money was the motivating factor behind his decision to leave Arsenal for Barcelona in 2012, adding that he knew he wouldn't get much game-time at the Nou Camp.
After years of being a bit-part player, Song had risen to become an important member of Arsene Wenger's squad in his final few years at the Emirates Stadium, and he missed just four Premier League games in the 2011/12 season.
But that caught the attention of the Catalan giants, and the prospect of earning more money at the Nou Camp appealed to him.
"Most footballers live beyond their means. I was at Arsenal for eight years but only began to earn a good living in the last four," Song said in an Instagram Live chat with the Cameroonian basketball star Pascal Siakam of the Toronto Raptors.
"That was because my salary went up a lot – but also because I came to realise what a waster I was.
"When I first joined them I was getting £15,000 a week. I was a young lad, and I was ecstatic.
"I wanted to rub shoulders with the big boys. I could shop wherever I wanted and have crazy nights out.
"I would go to training and see Thierry Henry – the King – turn up in an absolute gem of a car. I told myself I wanted the same car at all costs.
"I went to the dealership, signed the papers and arranged to pay for it by standing order – and just like that I had the same car as The King.
"But I swear that I had to hand the car back inside two months. All my money was going on filling it with petrol. I told them, ‘Give me a Toyota – this car’s too much for me’.
"When I next went to training Thierry asked me, ‘Where’s your car, son?’ I told him it’s on a higher level than me.
"During my entire time at Arsenal I couldn’t even save £100,000, while people thought I must be a millionaire."
Song says that the riches on offer at Barca were too temptng, even though he knew he wouldn't play many games.
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